Evaluation of a prednisolone acetate-loaded subconjunctival implant for the treatment of recurrent uveitis in a rabbit model
Chee, Soon Phaik
Venkatraman, Subbu S.
Wong, Tina T.
Date of Issue2014
School of Materials Science and Engineering
Aim To assess the efficacy of a biodegradable, prednisolone acetate implant in a rabbit uveitis model. Methods Randomized, controlled study of biodegradable microfilms preloaded with prednisolone acetate (PA) in a rabbit uveitis model. Experimental uveitis was induced by unilateral intravitreal injection of Mycobacterium tuberculosis H37Ra antigen (50 ug; 1 ug/uL) in preimmunized rabbits. PA-loaded poly[d,l-lactide-co-ε-caprolactone] (PLC) microfilms (n = 10) and blank microfilms (n = 6) were implanted subconjunctivally. An estimate of PA release in vivo was calculated from measured residual PA amounts in microfilms after the rabbits were sacrificed. The eyes were clinically monitored for ocular inflammation for 28 days. Histopathological examination of the enucleated eyes was performed at the end of the study period. Results In vitro studies revealed that sandwich PA-loaded microfilm formulations exhibited higher release kinetic compared to homogenous PA-loaded microfilms. The 60–40–60% microfilm released an average of 0.034 mg/day of PA over the period of 60 days in vitro; and we found that approximately 0.12 mg/day PA was released in vivo. Animals implanted with the PA-loaded microfilms exhibited significantly lowered median inflammatory scores when compared against the control group in this model for recurrent uveitis (P<0.001). The implants were clinically well tolerated by all the animals. Histology results showed no significant scarring or inflammation around the PA-loaded microfilms. Conclusion Our pilot study demonstrated that a subconjunctival PA-loaded implant is effective in suppressing inflammation in the rabbit model of uveitis, by providing therapeutic levels of PA that attenuated the inflammatory response even after a rechallenge. Longer term studies are now needed to establish the therapeutic potential of such a delivery system for treatment of ocular inflammation.
© 2014 Ang et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.