Pharmaceuticals & Vitamin D : Ocular


Generic Drug to Treat and Prevent Macular Degenerative Diseases

UW–Madison researchers have identified a new treatment option for a number of macular degenerative diseases including AMD, Stargardt’s disease and juvenile macular dystrophy.

The researchers found that a class of compounds called acid sphingomyelinase inhibitors can be used to fight retinal disorders associated with abnormal accumulations of lipofuscin (a cellular waste product), cholesterol or increased inflammation. One such inhibitor, generic name desipramine, is currently sold on the market as an antidepressant. Other acid sphingomyelinase inhibitors also may be suitable.

Vitamin D Compounds for the Treatment of Ocular Hypertension

UW–Madison researchers have developed a method of treating OHT by administering a vitamin D analog.  The vitamin D compound can be applied topically to one or both of an individual’s eyes to reduce IOP.

Method for Treating or Preventing Steroid-Induced Glaucoma

UW-Madison researchers have developed a method of using integrin antagonists to reduce the incidence of CLAN structures in trabecular meshwork cells, thereby increasing the outflow of fluid. CLAN formation is regulated by signaling mechanisms mediated by integrin receptors. Integrin inhibitors may be administered to a patient undergoing steroid treatment to disrupt those signaling mechanisms. The inhibitors interfere with the binding of a steroid-induced activator to an integrin or with signal transduction to the trabecular meshwork cells, reducing CLAN formation and decreasing the risk of glaucoma.

Method for Reducing Intraocular Pressure Using Integrin-Linked Kinase Inhibitor

UW-Madison researchers now have developed a method of treating increased intraocular pressure by administering agents that interfere with activities of integrin-linked kinase. Interfering with the ability of ILK to couple integrin signaling to the actin cytoskeleton increases aqueous humor outflow through the trabecular meshwork and decreases intraocular pressure. A PI3K inhibitor can be administered with the ILK inhibitor to further reduce intraocular pressure.