A glaucoma treatment that skips the poke in the eye
By Jan Jarvis
But Suchismita Acharya, PhD, is studying a different approach that not only takes the pain out of treating this blinding disease but also holds the promise of curing it.
Learn more about UNTHSC’s people and programs by signing up for the weekly HSC Insider email.
“Wouldn’t an eye drop be so much better?” she said. “Who likes getting poked into the eye?”
Dr. Acharya, a Research Assistant Professor in Pharmacology & Neuroscience and the North Texas Eye Research Institute, is working on a small molecule that can treat glaucoma by simultaneously decreasing eye pressure and protecting neurons and retinal ganglion cells.
“Such a compound could lower pressure in the front of the eye and also reach the back of the eye to protect ganglion cells,” she said. “This could be a cure for glaucoma.”
Her lab has designed and synthesized a unique nanosuspension eye drop of the new hybrid molecule that can reach to the back of the eye. It can easily be manufactured and used to target glaucoma, Dr. Acharya said.
By 2020, more than 76 million people are estimated to be affected by glaucoma, which is associated with elevated eye pressure and progressive death of retinal ganglion cells.
Dr. Acharya said the unique design of the drug makes it possible to both decrease intraocular pressure and prevent retinal ganglion cell death.
BrightFocus Foundation has awarded a $150,000 research grant to Dr. Acharya to further explore this approach. The Maryland-based nonprofit organization supports scientific research for Alzheimer’s disease, glaucoma and macular degeneration.
“This grant will help me expand on this research study and allow me to apply for bigger grants to help in evaluating the drug in human eyes and ultimately develop an eye drop to treat glaucoma,” Dr. Acharya said.
By Jan Jarvis Nearly a quarter of UNT System College of Pharmacy students took a day off from their classes to get a lesson in advocacy. The students joined nearly 600 pharmacy professionals from throughout the state for Pharmacist Day at the Capitol in Austin. The Texas Pharma...Read more
Mar 21, 2019
By Rebecca Najera High school juniors and seniors have the chance to show off their artistic skills at the UNT Health Science Center when the annual High School Art Show opens in the Atrium Gallery April 5. Brock ISD art teacher Sue Brunner has been submitting her students’ work to the art s...Read more
Mar 20, 2019
By Sally Crocker A team of UNTHSC researchers has recently completed a comprehensive community assessment for United Way of Tarrant County that will help set the organization’s strategic direction for years to come. Findings from this extensive study, which uncovered some of the m...Read more
Mar 19, 2019
By Jan Jarvis Under soft green lights, Isadora Cabral jumped into the arms of a classmate as soon as she opened her Match Day envelope. “It’s amazing, emotional, so great and exciting,” Cabral said. “I applied to way too many programs, but I got my No. 1.” Cabral will soon...Read more
Mar 18, 2019