Special Issue "Barrier Properties of the Human Eye and the Need for Novel Formulations, Drug Delivery Technologies and Medical Devices to Combat Age-Related Sight Loss"

A special issue of Pharmaceutics (ISSN 1999-4923). This special issue belongs to the section "Pharmaceutical Technology, Manufacturing and Devices".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 20 September 2021.

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. Raid Alany
E-Mail Website1 Website2
Guest Editor
Department of Pharmacy, School of Life Sciences, Pharmacy and Chemistry, Kingston University London, Penrhyn Road, Kingston upon Thames KT1 2EE, UK
Interests: ophthalmic drug delivery; lipid- and surfactant-based drug delivery systems; delivery of antisense oligonucleotides and siRNA; in situ gelling systems; veterinary
Prof. Steve Brocchini
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
UCL School of Pharmacy, 29-39 Brunswick Square, Bloomsbury, London WC1N 1AX, United Kingdom
Interests: formulation of proteins; ocular drug delivery; implantable devices; in vitro models
Dr. Ali Seyfoddin
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Auckland University of Technology, 55 Wellesley Street East, Auckland CBD, Auckland 1010, New Zealand
Interests: implants; nano- and microcapsules; 3D printing for biomedical applications; veterinary medicines

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The size of the global ophthalmic drugs market is expected to reach USD 43.1 billion by 2026. Finding efficient alternatives to conventional eye drops and intravitreal injections is desirable. The delivery of drugs and biologics to the ocular surface, anterior chamber, and posterior segment of the eye poses formidable challenges due the unique physiological and pharmacological constraints of the human eye. With the global rise of the elderly population, conditions such as cataract, presbyopia, glaucoma, dry eye, age-related macular degeneration, keratitis, and diabetic retinopathy are becoming ever more prevalent. Low ocular bioavailability along with poor patient adherence are characteristic of the topical ocular hypotensive eye drops that are routinely used in glaucoma management. Recurrent intravitreal injections of the costly anti-VEGF medications, regulatory and clinical challenges associated with the emergence of various biosimilars and the cost associated with developing sophisticated devices that can target and deliver their cargo to inaccessible locations such as the macula, choroid, retina, and optic disc are amongst the numerous challenges facing those working in the field. The emergence of new technologies of controlled and continuous drug release, 3D printing, polymeric scaffolds, contact lenses, punctal plugs, and ambitious devices that would allow simultaneous bidirectional delivery of drugs to the front and back of the eye is exciting and promising. Better understanding of the fundamentals, and the integration of basic formulation and drug delivery science with clinical knowledge could give rise to new modalities that improve patient outcomes. This Special Issue focuses on the barrier properties of the human eye and the need for novel formulations, drug delivery technologies, and medical devices to combat age-related sight loss.

Prof. Dr. Raid Alany
Prof. Dr. Steve Brocchini
Dr. Ali Seyfoddin
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Pharmaceutics is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2200 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • ocular drug delivery
  • ophthalmic medication
  • corneal/scleral penetration
  • vitreous drug delivery
  • 3D printing
  • hydrogels
  • scaffolds
  • ocular implants
  • colloidal and nanoparticulate drug carriers
  • controlled drug release

Published Papers (1 paper)

Order results
Result details
Select all
Export citation of selected articles as:


Open AccessArticle
Curcumin In Situ Gelling Polymeric Insert with Enhanced Ocular Performance
Pharmaceutics 2020, 12(12), 1158; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pharmaceutics12121158 - 28 Nov 2020
Viewed by 563
The search for an ocular drug delivery system that could provide long-acting effects without a detriment to the anatomy and physiology of the eye remains a challenge. Polyphenolic compounds (curcumin in particular) have recently gained popularity due to their powerful antioxidant properties; yet [...] Read more.
The search for an ocular drug delivery system that could provide long-acting effects without a detriment to the anatomy and physiology of the eye remains a challenge. Polyphenolic compounds (curcumin in particular) have recently gained popularity due to their powerful antioxidant properties; yet curcumin suffers poor stability and water solubility. A conventional eye drop formulation of curcumin in the form of a suspension is likely to suffer a short duration of action requiring multiple instillations. On the other hand, polymeric in-situ gelling inserts offer the prospect of overcoming these limitations. The aim of this study was to prepare, characterize and evaluate in vivo, polymeric, in-situ gelling and mucoadhesive inserts for ocular surface delivery of curcumin. Different types and ratios of biocompatible polymers (HPMC, CMC, PL 127 and PVA) and three plasticizers along with the solvent casting method were adopted to prepare curcumin inserts. The inserts were investigated for their physicochemical characteristics, applicability, and suitability of use for potential placement on the ocular surface. The prepared inserts revealed that curcumin was mainly dispersed in the molecular form. Insert surfaces remained smooth and uniform without cracks appearing during preparation and thereafter. Improved mechanical and mucoadhesive properties, enhanced in vitro release (7.5- to 9-fold increases in RRT300 min) and transcorneal permeation (5.4- to 8.86-fold increases in Papp) of curcumin was achieved by selected in-situ gelling inserts compared to a control curcumin suspension. The developed inserts demonstrated acceptable ocular tolerability, enhanced corneal permeability, and sustained release of curcumin along with retention of insert formulation F7 on the ocular surface for at least two-hours. This insert provides a viable alternative to conventional eye drop formulations of curcumin. Full article
Show Figures

Graphical abstract

Back to TopTop