Researchers at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) School of Optometry have been awarded a $1.9 million grant from the National Eye Institute (NEI) to study potential molecular markers in patients that could predict structural and functional changes of the eye in dry eye disease, potentially leading to a targeted therapy.
According to researchers, the study will focus on the outer lipid layer of the eye and the biochemical changes that cause dry eye. Researchers will reportedly work to target and identify the fatty acids that decrease the tear film, and their structural impact on the eye by using custom-built optical systems capable of tear film measurement. They reportedly hope to find the specific lipid that is altered in the lipid layer to develop a targeted therapy.
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Source: University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Optometry