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'Molecular wipe': Potential treatment for 'pink eye' epidemic

Date:
September 29, 2011
Source:
American Chemical Society
Summary:
Scientists are reporting discovery of a potential new drug for epidemic keratoconjunctivitis (EKC) -- sometimes called "pink eye" -- a highly infectious eye disease that may occur in 15 million to 20 million people annually in the United States alone. Their report describes an innovative new "molecular wipe" that sweeps up viruses responsible for EKC.

Scientists are reporting discovery of a potential new drug for epidemic keratoconjunctivitis (EKC) -- sometimes called "pink eye" -- a highly infectious eye disease that may occur in 15 million to 20 million people annually in the United States alone.

Their report describing an innovative new "molecular wipe" that sweeps up viruses responsible for EKC appears in ACS's Journal of Medicinal Chemistry.

Ulf Ellervik and colleagues note that there is no approved treatment for EKC, which is caused by viruses from the same family responsible for the common cold. EKC affects the cornea, the clear, dome-shaped tissue that forms the outer layer of the eye. It causes redness, pain, tearing, and may reduce visions for months. "Patients are usually recommended to stay home from work or school, resulting in substantial economic losses," the scientists write.

They describe discovery of a potential new drug that sweeps up the viruses responsible for EKC, preventing the viruses from binding to and infecting the cornea. The drug removes viruses already in the eye and new viruses that are forming. In doing so, it would relieve symptoms, speed up healing (potentially avoiding impaired vision, and reduce and the risk of infecting the patient's other eye or spreading the infection within families, schools and work places, the scientists suggested.

The authors acknowledge funding from Adenovir Pharma AB, The Swedish Research Council, The Crafoord Foundation, and The Royal Physiographic Society in Lund.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Chemical Society. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Karolina Aplander, Marko Marttila, Sophie Manner, Niklas Arnberg, Olov Sterner, Ulf Ellervik. Molecular Wipes: Application to Epidemic Keratoconjuctivitis. Journal of Medicinal Chemistry, 2011; 110831132824018 DOI: 10.1021/jm200545m

Cite This Page:

American Chemical Society. "'Molecular wipe': Potential treatment for 'pink eye' epidemic." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 29 September 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/09/110928105903.htm>.
American Chemical Society. (2011, September 29). 'Molecular wipe': Potential treatment for 'pink eye' epidemic. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 1, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/09/110928105903.htm
American Chemical Society. "'Molecular wipe': Potential treatment for 'pink eye' epidemic." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/09/110928105903.htm (accessed October 1, 2014).

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