Human hybrid antimicrobial peptides for ocular surface infection: from conceptualisation to translation
- Type of funding: Fight for Sight/ John Lee, Royal College of Ophthalmologists Primer Fellowship Awards
- Grant Holder: Dr Darren Shu Jeng Ting
- Institute: University of Nottingham
- Region: East Midlands
- Start date: August 2018
- End Date: August 2019
- Priority: Treatment
- Eye Category: Corneal & external
Damage to the cornea can lead to permanent scarring with subsequent visual impairment or blindness. Corneal blindness represents the 4th leading cause of blindness (5.1%) globally. It affects approximately 2 million people worldwide, with corneal infection being the main culprit.
Affected patients are usually debilitated by pain and visual impairment and often require long-term hospital admissions for intensive antibiotic treatment. However, due to antibiotic resistance, there is a growing concern on the declining antibiotic efficacy.
Recently, antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) have shown promise as potential therapeutic agents due to their unique antimicrobial ability against a wide range of infective organisms.
Dr Darren Shu Jeng Ting aims to create and develop novel human-derived hybrid AMPs for a range of ocular surface infections. Different combinations of human-derived hybrid peptides will be designed and tested for antimicrobial efficacy and toxicity to host tissue.
Developing a new class of efficacious and broad-spectrum antimicrobial agent could potentially improve the management and outcome of various types of ocular surface infection, including bacterial, fungal, viral and acanthamoeba infection.