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Smart Contact Lens for Glaucoma Could Release Drugs When Needed

Contact lenses like this one can improve vision, but in the future they might also help treat glaucoma.

Credit: Klaus Vedfelt/Getty Images

A prototype wireless contact lens developed by researchers at China's Sun Yat-Sen and Jinan universities could help treat glaucoma by automatically dispensing drugs when pressure inside the eye becomes excessive.

The lens's outer layer has a ring of tiny copper plates surrounding the pupil, which detect eye deformation caused by increasing pressure.

An antenna positioned near the eye sends this data to a computer, while the lens's inner layer contains the pressure-lowering drug brimonidine, which can be discharged via a signal from the computer.

In tests on rabbits, the researchers found the animals' eye pressure declined by roughly a third after wearing the lenses for 30 minutes, and by more than 40% after wearing them for two hours, on average.

From New Scientist
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Abstracts Copyright © 2022 SmithBucklin, Washington, DC, USA


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