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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: GR/S16843/01
Title: Synthesis, characterisation and performance of novel porphyrin-incorporated intraocular lens biomaterials
Principal Investigator: Jones, Professor DS
Other Investigators:
McCoy, Professor CP Bell, Professor SEJ Gorman, Professor SP
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Project Partners:
Department: Sch of Pharmacy
Organisation: Queen's University of Belfast
Scheme: Standard Research (Pre-FEC)
Starts: 26 June 2003 Ends: 25 June 2006 Value (£): 241,676
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Biomaterials
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Healthcare
Related Grants:
Panel History:  
Summary on Grant Application Form
Potentially the most devastating complication of cataract surgery, which 200,000 patients undergo annually in the UK, is infectious endophthalmitis. Current antibiotic therapy is ineffective so a mechanism for reduction in its incidence is timely and important from both quality of life and financial perspectives. This investigation proposes a novel application of photodynamic therapy by incorporating porphyrin sensitisers on the surface of replacement intraocular lenses (IOLs). The first step in endophthalmitis involves postoperative colonisation of the IOL surface by bacterial pathogens. The proposed IOL materials will produce cytotoxic effects at the precise site of infection by generation of singlet oxygen through sensitiser excitation b ambient sunlight. The low concentrations of sensitiser required will not affect the optical transparency of the IOL and the mechanisms of incorporation will ensure the sensitiser does not leach from the IOL to the surrounding humor. Two mechanisms for sensitiser incorporation will be used; firstly charged sensitisers will be electrostatically bound to oppositely-charged hydrogels and secondly a sensitiser-hydrogel copolymer will be coated on existing IOLs. Full mechanical, spectroscopic and microbiological assessments of performance of the new materials will be carried out.
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Organisation Website: http://www.qub.ac.uk