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UIC Barcelona researchers create the first ophthalmological keratoprosthesis bactericide
This is one of the main results from the research led by Dr Xavier Gil, researcher at the Bioengineering Institute of Technology, and Dr Rafael Barraquer, professor at the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, and that was made possible thanks to the grant received from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF)
After nearly two years of work, the heads of the project “Boston keratoprosthesis bactericide based on silver nanoparticles and biofunctionalised to prevent retroprosthetic fibrosis” demonstrating the first in vivo results, which open the door to promising applications in the field of ophthalmology to help patients with severe corneal pathologies.
The study was created with the primary objective of developing improvements in the Boston keratoprosthesis in order to reduce the risk of bacterial infection in these prostheses and to also prevent formation of a retromembrane on the backplate of the prothesis, which obstructs vision and causes blindness in patients. The research team led by Dr Xavier Gil, a researcher at the Bioengineering Institute of Technology and Dr Rafael Barraquer, of the Instituto Barraquer and also a professor at the University, have created a new prosthetic design with strong bactericidal characteristics thanks to the use of silver nanoparticles, which also inhibits fibroblast adhesion by an anchor peptide. In vivo studies have allowed the team to verify the good results of this prosthesis, which prevented infection and allowed vision to be recovered after insertion.
The presentation of these promising results coincided with the recognition of the scientific career of Dr Xavier Gil, who has recently received the 2020 Best Scientific Career from the Spanish Society of Materials (SOCIEMAT).