• A Phase II clinical study will evaluate topical cis-Urocanic acid (cis-UCA) to treat dry eye. Cis-UCA is an endogenous amino acid metabolite derived from histadine, normally present in the human body with particularly high concentrations located in the skin, explains James McLaughlin, PhD, of Ora, a clinical research and product development firm that will oversee the project. It’s believed to work as an anti-inflammatory agent by reducing PMN cell reactive oxygen species.

Phase I (n=37) evaluated safety, with drops administered TID for 14 days in 0.5% and 2.5% concentrations. Both were well tolerated, with no serious adverse effects. Phase II will randomize 150 dry eye patients into one of three groups (placebo or one of two dosages of the cis-UCA eye drop). Patients will be evaluated over a five-week period using the Controlled Adverse Environment, a clinical assessment tool developed by Ora. Corneal staining and OSDI scores will be collected during the trial.

If successful, the cis-UCA drop could one day join a very limited group of prescription drugs for dry eye. 

• Acuvue Oasys silicone hydrogel lenses for astigmatism now come with a new -2.75 cyl option, the first SiHy lens to do so, says manufacturer Johnson & Johnson Vision Care. No special ordering is needed, the company says.

• New research published in the October 2014 Cornea suggests collagen crosslinking may be effective in halting keratoconus progression for up to five years. Twenty-one patients with progressive keratoconus who underwent CLX were evaluated preoperatively and postoperatively at one-year intervals up to five years. Researchers observed mean uncorrected and best spectacle-corrected visual acuity improved significantly from the pre-op visit to the five-year postoperative visit. Additionally, mean steep and mean flat keratometry readings dropped significantly in the same time period. No significant change was observed in endothelial cell density or mean central corneal thickness.

• A study of 67 cataract surgery patients found that tear hyperosmolarity resulted in a wider variation in keratometry readings between visits than normal osmolar status, with 16% of hyperosmolar eyes showing over 1D of change in K cylinder values between the first and second visit, according to TearLab. The study was presented at the recent Congress of the European Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgeons in London, and will be submitted for publication.