LSU AgCenter scientists have formulated a nanoparticle matrix that could be used in eye drops to both prevent and treat cataracts, a leading cause of vision loss in older adults.
Professor Cristina Sabliov and assistant professor Carlos Astete in the AgCenter Department of Biological and Agricultural Engineering have found a way to use nanoparticles to efficiently deliver hydrophobic lutein and enhance its stability and antioxidant properties so it can be used effectively in eye drops.
Lutein is a naturally occurring yellow pigment known as a carotenoid. It can be found in numerous plants, including yellow flowers and corn, as well as egg yolks and animal fats.
Lutein can also be found in the human eye. Studies have shown that dietary supplements can help replenish ocular lutein. But treatments using lutein have been limited in the past by the substance’s poor water solubility, its susceptibility to degradation and low absorption efficiency.
“The nanoparticle matrix can deliver lutein to the eye efficiently as an eye drop formulation,” Sabliov said. “Direct application of lutein to the eye in this formulation improves its effect against cataracts.”
Source & further reading:http://www.lsuagcenter.com/profiles/rbogren/articles/page1461866942993