Hyderabad Developes First Ever 3D Printed Human Cornea In India

Posted on

Hyderabad: While the technology is skyrocketing across the globe, India is not much behind. For the first time ever, researchers in Hyderabad have successfully 3D-printed an artificial cornea in the country. Reportedly, in this maiden attempt, the cornea was transplanted into a rabbit eye. Researchers from L.V. Prasad Eye Institute (LVPEI), Indian Institute of Technology Hyderabad (IITH), and the Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB), had collaborated to develop this 3D-printed cornea from a human donor corneal tissue.Also Read – Gold Rate Today: Check Price of Yellow Metal on August 08 in Your City Here

“It is a made-in-India product by an Indian clinician-scientist team and the first 3-D printed human cornea that is optically and physically suitable for transplantation. The bio-ink used to make this 3D printed cornea can be sight-saving for army personnel at the site of injury to seal the corneal perforation and prevent infection during war-related injuries or in a remote area with no tertiary eye care facility,”  news agency IANS reported quoting the researchers.. Also Read – Independence Day Special: What’s In A Name? Major Cities In India And Their Unique Sobriquets

Sayan Basu and Vivek Singh, lead researchers from L.V. Prasad Eye Institute, believe this can be a ground-breaking and disruptive innovation in treating diseases like corneal scarring (where the cornea becomes opaque) or Keratoconus (where the cornea gradually becomes thin with time). Also Read – Gold Rates Today: Check Price of Yellow Metal in Your City on August 02, 2022

The cornea is the clear front layer of the eye that helps focus light and aids in clear vision. Corneal damage is a leading cause of blindness worldwide with more than 1.5 million new cases of corneal blindness reported every year.

Unfortunately, today there is a huge gap between the demand and supply of donor corneal tissue  across the globe. Around less than 5 per cent of new cases of corneal diseases are treated by corneal transplantations due to donor tissue shortage.

About 3D printed cornea

  • This 3D printed cornea is a completely natural product with no synthetic components used
  • It is free from animal residues and I said to be safe to be used in patients.
  • It was developed jointly by government as well as philanthropic funding.
  • With recent advancements in regenerative medicine and tissue engineering, the researchers from LVPEI, IITH and CCMB used decellularized corneal tissue matrix and stem cells derived from the human eye to develop a unique biomimetic hydrogel (patent pending) that was used as the background material for the 3D-printed cornea.
  • These human tissue-based 3-D printed corneas are not only safer but are also more affordable for patients with corneal blindness in India, they said.
  • Each donor cornea can aid in the preparation of three 3D-printed corneas. In addition, the cornea can be printed in various diameters from 3 mm to 13 mm and can be customized based on the specifications of the patient. This can potentially offer a solution to the shortage of donor corneas for transplantation and has great clinical significance.

However, the printed corneas will need to undergo further clinical testing and development before they can be used in patients, and this may take several years.

(With inputs from IANS)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.