• By Keng Jin Lee and Kanaga Rajan
    Cataract/Anterior Segment, Comprehensive Ophthalmology, Retina/Vitreous

    A weekly roundup of ophthalmic news from around the web.

    A twice-daily topical corticosteroid for postop pain has been cleared by the FDA. Thanks to a novel proprietary mucus-penetrating technology, the loteprednol etabonate suspension (Inveltys) offers similar efficacy as other steroid-based products—but with half the number of doses. The company expects the drug to hit markets in early 2019. Kala Pharmaceuticals

    In other FDA news, a novel gene therapy for hereditary angioedema has received orphan drug designation. The single-administration intravenous treatment ups the production of the C1 esterase inhibitor protein to prevent angioedema attacks in people suffering from this rare disorder. Adverum Biotechnologies

    Scientists have unveiled a 3D-printed bionic eye, crafted from layers of silver and functional light receptors on a hemispherical surface. Senior author Michael McAlpine, PhD, said the team was pleasantly surprised with the photodiodes’ 25% efficiency in converting light into electricity, which they plan to further improve upon in future models. “Bionic eyes are usually thought of as science fiction, but now we are closer than ever using a multimaterial 3D printer,” said McAlpine. Advanced Materials, University of Minnesota (Image courtesy of McAlpine Research Group)

    An inexpensive, non-invasive test for river blindness may be around the corner. In a new ACS Infectious Disease study, Scripps researchers describe a simple urine test that detects a metabolite of tyramine—a neurotransmitter produced by the parasite—in the urine of infected humans. The antibody-based dipstick works in a similar manner as pregnancy tests: 1 line means you’re in the clear, and no lines means you’re infected. Scripps Research

    Baylor researchers have uncovered 15 novel genes that regulate the retina in mice. Results from their high throughput screen, published in Cell Reports, further reveal that 9 of the genes are implicated in human neural disorders. “This study is particularly exciting because in addition to helping understand the mechanisms underlying eye disease, it will likely provide insights into other neurological or cardiovascular disorders,” stated co-author Mary Dickinson, PhD, in the press release. Baylor College of Medicine