The Eyegenix Solution
What if a replacement cornea could be manufactured, rather than harvested?
Until now, the creation of a biocompatible material with both mechanical strength and optical transparency has proved elusive. But for the first time, a material that combines these properties has been created.
Staging during the manufacturing process of Eyegenix biosynthetic corneas.
Eyegenix is in late-stage clinical trials for a biosynthetic cornea, derived from collagen, that has the optical properties of human tissue, can be manufactured on demand in virtually unlimited quantities, and can be transplanted using safe, quick, universally established techniques.
Recipients of biosynthetic corneas avoid a lifetime of topical immunosuppressive drugs. Biosynthetic corneas are engineered to be devoid of immunogenic markers, which eliminates the potential for rejection. These corneas have been shown not only to allow the body’s cells to attach to their material matrix, but also to promote nerve cell regeneration, so patients regain sensation and tear production; the cornea becomes a true part of the recipient’s body.
The goal, says Dr. Jennifer Elisseeff, Professor at the Wilmer Eye Institute of the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, and Director of the Translational Tissue Engineering Center at Johns Hopkins University, “is that [the tissue] will eventually be living—and if it’s actually living, then your body can maintain it.”