Effective drug delivery to the retina, due to anatomical barriers preventing entry of therapeutic substances, is currently one of the most challenging areas in drug development in ophthalmology. Presently the only route of administration for large protein therapeutics, including the anti-Vascular Endothelial Growth Factors is intraocular injection.
Non-invasive ocular drug delivery is currently being developed. The UCL Drug Delivery System (UDDS) is a nanotechnology system developed in the Cordeiro laboratory. It has already been used to successfully deliver several molecules in eye-drops to the back of the eye without an injection. The aim of this project is to develop a UDDS formulation for patients to replace monthly hospital-administered intraocular injections with daily self-administered eye-drops.
However, before its benefits are made available to patients, we need to perform a clinical trial to ensure its safety. The objectives of this project are therefore to enable a First-in-Man study to be undertaken, so we can proceed to using UDDS in patients.