First described in 1983, the multifunctional protein CLU (clusterin) is expressed throughout the body, including in the eye. CLU's homeostatic activities are well documented, however its roles in health and disease are still not well understood. CLU protein is localized to the apical layers of the ocular surface epithelia and is also present in tears. CLU prevents and ameliorates ocular surface disease in a preclinical model for dry eye by a remarkable sealing mechanism. CLU could serve as a novel biotherapeutic for dry eye disease.
The National Eye Institute of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) has awarded a Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) grant R41-EY025890 to Proteris Biotech, Inc. (PB) to develop innovative technology for the treatment of dry eye. The ultimate goal is a new U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved biotherapeutic called Protearin. The grant will begin May 1, 2016.
A natural protein in tears could help researchers looking at the common affliction
Researchers find natural protein seals ocular surface and offers promise to ameliorate dry eye.