CORE News

New Contact Lens Update Focuses on Specialty Rigid Lens Developments

WATERLOO, Ontario, May 2, 2022—The Centre for Ocular Research & Education (CORE) has published Issue 65 of Contact Lens Update, which focuses on the potential benefits of specialty rigid lenses (sclerals and orthokeratology) for the management of complicated cases. The latest edition and all past issues are available for free at ContactLensUpdate.com. “Eye care practitioners are very comfortable fitting soft contact lenses, yet only about 1 in 10 fits involve rigid specialty lenses. In some cases of severe dry eye, diseased corneas, or post-trauma care, rigid lenses can attain vision or other performance levels that soft lenses simply cannot provide,” said CORE Director Lyndon Jones. “This issue of Contact Lens Update zeroes in on these situations where specialty rigid lenses can prove invaluable for certain patients.”
Maria Walker
Maria Walker, assistant professor at the College of Optometry at the University of Houston, writes the opening editorial. She provides a comprehensive review of the potential scleral and orthokeratology (ortho-k) lens use in patients with dry eye and what makes an ideal (and less than ideal) patient for both lens types.
Daddi Fadel
The feature article from Daddi Fadel, a private practitioner and specialty lens fitter from Italy, discusses key findings from a paper investigating the impact of a polyethylene glycol (PEG)-based surface treatment on scleral lens comfort in patients with dry eyes. Her insights will help clinicians understand potential benefits that coatings may provide and optimal prescribing situations.
Boris Severinsky
Boris Severinsky, chief of the Specialty Lens Service at the Emory University School of Medicine, recaps his poster presented at a recent American Academy of Optometry meeting. His study shows the benefits of fitting therapeutic scleral lenses to manage ocular surface disease and how valuable they can be in the rehabilitation of patients with a variety of ocular surface complications.
Melanie Frogozo
Melanie Frogozo, a private practitioner in San Antonio, Texas, provides an extensive case report complemented by stunning images. She summarizes the use of a scleral contact lens to manage a challenging patient with an extensive persistent epithelial defect (PED) due to neurotrophic keratitis. Her review of the fitting procedure offers a fascinating read of how valuable scleral lenses can be in very complex cases. Published six times per year, Contact Lens Update provides a global platform for unbiased clinical insights based in current research. Since 2011, each issue has provided dependable and up-to-date ocular health information for more than 60,000 leading eye care professionals. In addition to a complete archive of back issues, ContactLensUpdate.com offers a resource library that provides no-cost professional tools, patient resources, images and video. It also houses complimentary technical training videos produced by International Association of Contact Lens Educators, plus an industry glossary. Industry professionals can access the latest issue directly from ContactLensUpdate.com or quickly sign up for email receipt of future issues. The publication receives support from the educational arms of AlconCooperVision, and Johnson & Johnson Vision. # # # About the Centre for Ocular Research & Education (CORE) The Centre for Ocular Research & Education (CORE) was established in 1988 at the University of Waterloo’s School of Optometry & Vision Science. Over the next three decades, the organization evolved from a three-person operation into a thriving hub of basic and applied research, collaborating with sponsors, agencies and academia on advanced biosciences, clinical research and education. Its uncompromising independence and results of the highest quality have been at the heart of many of the most prominent advances in eye health. Today, its approximately 50-person team serves a range of ophthalmic sectors, including medical devices, ocular pharmaceuticals, digital technology and others, with a focus on the anterior segment. For more information, please visit core.uwaterloo.ca. MEDIA CONTACTS Aimee J. Lewis or Mike McDougall, APR, Fellow PRSA, McDougall Communications for CORE aimee@mcdougallpr.com +1.585.414.9838 |  mike@mcdougallpr.com +1.585.545.1815

CORE Expands Specialty Contact Lens Expertise with Appointment of Dr. Rosa Yang

WATERLOO, Ontario, April 19, 2022—The Centre for Ocular Research & Education (CORE) has appointed Rosa Yang, OD, FAAO, as a clinical research associate, a move that supports the growing use of specialty contact lenses worldwide. Dr. Yang also serves as a clinical instructor at the University of Waterloo School of Optometry & Vision Science and is a practicing optometrist in the Greater Toronto Area.

“Rosa’s work on improving the clinical efficacy of specialty lenses through optimized design and auxiliary technologies—especially for myopia control and visual rehabilitation—is a natural fit with CORE’s growing work in these sectors,” said Dr. Lyndon Jones, CORE’s director.

Dr. Yang’s cornea and contact lens residency at the University of Waterloo focused on managing patients who exhibited corneal ectasia and severe dry eye with specialty contact lenses, as well as myopia control therapies that included orthokeratology. At the 2020 Global Specialty Lens Symposium, she was lead author on the first place poster in the clinical category, Special Considerations in Managing a Patient with Penetrating Trauma Using Gas Permeable Contact Lens.

She is a past recipient of the American Academy of Optometry Sheldon Wechsler Contact Lens Residency Award, recognizing talented optometric residents who demonstrate a passion and commitment to practice, research, and education.

CORE’s specialty contact lens-related work spans a range of program areas, including design optimization for orthokeratology, scleral lens physiological performance, and the impact of scleral lenses on ocular surface disease and dry eye management.

“As specialty lenses become more embedded in mainstream clinical practice, CORE is committed to maintaining our leadership in fundamental and clinical research, in addition to the development of professional educational materials,” said Dr. Jones. “We’re enthusiastic about Dr. Yang enriching our specialty capacity—an important area for CORE that will grow even stronger in the coming months.”

# # #

About the Centre for Ocular Research & Education (CORE)
The Centre for Ocular Research & Education (CORE) – formerly known as the Centre for Contact Lens Research – was established in 1988 at the University of Waterloo’s School of Optometry & Vision Science. Over the next three decades, the organization evolved from a three-person operation into a thriving hub of basic and applied research, collaborating with sponsors, agencies and academia on advanced biosciences, clinical research and education. Its uncompromising independence and results of the highest quality have been at the heart of many of the most prominent advances in eye health. Today, its approximately 50-person team serves a range of ophthalmic sectors, including medical devices, ocular pharmaceuticals, digital technology and others, with a focus on the anterior segment. For more information, please visit core.uwaterloo.ca.

 

MEDIA CONTACTS:
Aimee J. Lewis or Mike McDougall, APR, Fellow PRSA
McDougall Communications for CORE
aimee@mcdougallpr.com +1.585.414.9838  |  mike@mcdougallpr.com +1.585.434.2150

Students Around the Globe Use OcuBall’s Polymer-Based Eye Model to Gain ‘Real Feel’ Practice of Foreign Body Removal

 

Ocuball Eliminates Odor and BioHazards

WATERLOO, Ontario, April 8, 2022—Optometry educators and students in five countries are now using a novel eye model to replace traditional animal-based methods for foreign body removal. OcuBlink, Inc., has shipped its polymer-based eye model, OcuBall, to nearly a dozen colleges and universities in Australia, Canada, Puerto Rico, the United States and United Kingdom.

OcuBall feels like a human eye and simulates a realistic response to embedded foreign bodies, similar to those found in clinical environments. It replaces animal-based methods in optometry training environments while eliminating safety concerns related to handling, disposal and storage of biological tissue.

“There is an immediate ‘wow’ factor when students begin using OcuBalls in our didactic labs,” said Navjit K. Sanghera, OD, FAAO, ocular disease curriculum coordinator and associate professor of optometry at the Illinois College of Optometry, who has been using OcuBalls for three years. “Second year students find the realistic feel helpful in gaining confidence and experience removing foreign bodies. The eyeballs have become a wonderful addition to our curriculum.”

OcuBall comes premade with metal steel particles inserted on the surface of the eye to provide a realistic, safe and inexpensive clinical scenario for the practice of foreign body removal. Over time, the metal pieces can rust and form a typical rust ring, just as they do in the human eye. Use in educational settings helps optometry students practice and gain confidence in the removal of materials from the eye.

Made of a biocompatible polymer-based material, OcuBall eliminates concerns of cross-contamination and biological waste. OcuBall can be stored in saline for several weeks without spoilage and has no odor.

OcuBlink began as an initiative of the Centre for Ocular Research & Education (CORE) and now operates as an affiliate, utilizing CORE’s staffing, counsel and laboratories. In the fall of 2018, OcuBlink was accepted into Velocity, Canada’s most productive startup incubator. Last year, OcuBlink, Inc., announced its development of a life-like in-vitro eye model that reduces dependence on animal testing to understand the science of the eye.

For more information, visit OcuBlink.com.

Download Images and Video

# # #

About OcuBlink Inc.
OcuBlink develops sophisticated in vitro eye models for ophthalmic companies to accelerate research and development of products for the eye. These include devices for studying anterior and posterior eye disease and contact lens offerings, and its platforms have already been the subject of six conference abstracts and seven papers highlighting the technology. OcuBlink is affiliated with the Centre for Ocular Research and Education (CORE), based at the School of Optometry & Vision Science, University of Waterloo, Ontario, Canada. For more information, visit OcuBlink.com.

 

About the Centre for Ocular Research & Education (CORE)
The Centre for Ocular Research & Education (CORE) – formerly known as the Centre for Contact Lens Research – was established in 1988 at the University of Waterloo’s School of Optometry & Vision Science. Over the next three decades, the organization evolved from a three-person operation into a thriving hub of basic and applied research, collaborating with sponsors, agencies and academia on advanced biosciences, clinical research and education. Its uncompromising independence and results of the highest quality have been at the heart of many of the most prominent advances in eye health. Today, its approximately 50-person team serves a range of ophthalmic sectors, including medical devices, ocular pharmaceuticals, digital technology and others, with a focus on the anterior segment. For more information, please visit core.uwaterloo.ca.

 

MEDIA CONTACTS:
Aimee J. Lewis or Mike McDougall, APR, Fellow PRSA
McDougall Communications for CORE
aimee@mcdougallpr.com +1.585.414.9838  |  mike@mcdougallpr.com +1.585.434.2150

New Contact Lens Update Offers Latest Science & Insights to Improve Wear and Care Compliance

Includes Downloadable Patient Education Tool

WATERLOO, Ontario, March 1, 2022—The Centre for Ocular Research & Education (CORE) has published Issue 64 of Contact Lens Update, which explores risks associated with lens wear non-compliance and insights to improve patient behaviors. The latest edition and all past issues are available for free at ContactLensUpdate.com.

“Practitioners are all too aware of patients who wear their lenses beyond when they should be replaced. Whether due to forgetfulness, an attempt to save money, or otherwise, the challenge is widespread,” said CORE Director Lyndon Jones. “This issue of Contact Lens Update provides evidence that eye care practitioners can use to discuss potential unwelcome impacts with their patients, and provides a new tool to encourage correct replacement schedules.”

Desmond Fonn

Distinguished Professor Emeritus at the School of Optometry and Vision Science at the University of Waterloo Desmond Fonn writes the opening editorial. He provides a comprehensive review of the background behind frequent replacement and disposable lens development and evidence on the risks associated with stretching the life of a lens.

Debarun Dutta

A feature article from Debarun Dutta, lecturer at Aston University’s School of Optometry, discusses key findings from a paper investigating soft contact lens compliance. He offers valuable insights for clinicians on patients’ perspectives of lens wear and instructions received for aftercare, including advice on how to translate the findings into practice.

John Gialousakis

John Gialousakis, Associate Professor at Midwestern University Chicago College of Optometry, recaps his poster presented at a recent American Academy of Optometry meeting. His work investigates whether providing appropriate education to contact lens wearers—including re-education—regarding handling and hygiene may ultimately result in fewer adverse reactions and bad habits.

Alison Ng

Alison Ng, Clinical Scientist at CORE, provides a useful patient handout that summarizes the clinical impact of stretching lens replacement times. The talk tool, appropriate for in-chair counsel or online use, helps practitioners speak with wearers about how to follow the replacement schedule most appropriate for the lenses they wear.

Published six times per year, Contact Lens Update provides a global platform for unbiased clinical insights based in current research. Since 2011, each issue has provided dependable and up-to-date ocular health information for more than 60,000 leading eye care professionals.

In addition to a complete archive of back issues, ContactLensUpdate.com offers a resource library that provides no-cost professional tools, patient resources, images and video. It also houses complimentary technical training videos produced by International Association of Contact Lens Educators, plus an industry glossary. Industry professionals can access the latest issue directly from ContactLensUpdate.com or quickly sign up for email receipt of future issues.

The publication receives support from the educational arms of AlconCooperVision, and Johnson & Johnson Vision.

# # #

 

About the Centre for Ocular Research & Education (CORE)
The Centre for Ocular Research & Education (CORE) was established in 1988 at the University of Waterloo’s School of Optometry & Vision Science. Over the next three decades, the organization evolved from a three-person operation into a thriving hub of basic and applied research, collaborating with sponsors, agencies and academia on advanced biosciences, clinical research and education. Its uncompromising independence and results of the highest quality have been at the heart of many of the most prominent advances in eye health. Today, its approximately 50-person team serves a range of ophthalmic sectors, including medical devices, ocular pharmaceuticals, digital technology and others, with a focus on the anterior segment. For more information, please visit core.uwaterloo.ca.

MEDIA CONTACTS
Aimee J. Lewis or Mike McDougall, APR, Fellow PRSA, McDougall Communications for CORE
aimee@mcdougallpr.com +1.585.414.9838  |  mike@mcdougallpr.com +1.585.545.1815

Study Shows Significant Impact of Novel Omega-3 and Omega-6 Supplement for People with Severe Dry Eye Disease

CORE-Conducted Clinical Study Published in Optometry & Vision Science; Promising Findings Offer Potential for Eye Care Community & Patients

WATERLOO, ONTARIO, February 9, 2022—A newly-published study conducted by the Centre for Ocular Research & Education (CORE) indicates that a novel combination of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids ingested as a dietary supplement significantly improves symptoms in people who suffer from severe dry eye disease. Essential fatty acids are an established therapy, yet this is the first clinical trial to demonstrate the effect of eicosapentaenoic acid, docosahexaenoic acid, and γ-linoleic acid in such a population.

Effect of a Novel Omega-3 and Omega-6 Fatty Acid Supplement on Dry Eye Disease: A 3-month Randomized Controlled Trial (Ng A, et al) appears in the January 2022 edition (Volume 99, Issue 1) of Optometry and Vision Science, the peer review journal of the American Academy of Optometry.

The prospective, randomized, double-masked parallel group study assessed daily use of a supplement containing omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids (1200 mg eicosapentaenoic acid, 300 mg docosahexaenoic acid, 150 mg γ-linoleic acid) or the placebo (coconut and olive oil) for three months. Participants with baseline Ocular Surface Disease Index (OSDI) scores >52 demonstrated a substantial improvement in symptoms with the treatment at the study’s conclusion, averaging a 20.8 point reduction. That compared to a 7.8 point reduction in the similarly-symptomatic placebo group.

“These study participants were far more symptomatic than other published trials involving omega-3 supplementation, allowing for additional analysis,” said Alison Ng, PhD, MCOptom, FAAO, CORE clinical scientist and the paper’s first author. “The Tear Film and Ocular Surface Society Dry Eye Workshop II (TFOS DEWS II) report recommended dietary supplementation with omega-3 as the first stage of management for dry eye disease. Our findings suggest that even the most severe sufferers can benefit from a meaningful improvement in symptoms with omega-3 and -6 supplementation.”

Approximately one in eleven people experience dry eye disease. Its prevalence is on the rise, owing to lifestyle changes including increased use of digital screens. Besides the impact on their daily activities, patients with dry eye disease may further experience changes to their vision and quality of life.

The paper’s authors recommend that future studies examine the effects of early dietary supplementation with omega-3 and -6 fatty acids in patients presenting with mild-to-moderate dry eye disease to understand potential benefits. They also advise that further research among highly symptomatic participants is warranted.

The study was supported by Nature’s Way of Canada.

# # #About the Centre for Ocular Research & Education (CORE)
The Centre for Ocular Research & Education (CORE) was established in 1988 at the University of Waterloo’s School of Optometry & Vision Science. Over the next three decades, the organization evolved from a three-person operation into a thriving hub of basic and applied research, collaborating with sponsors, agencies and academia on advanced biosciences, clinical research and education. Its uncompromising independence and results of the highest quality have been at the heart of many of the most prominent advances in eye health. Today, its approximately 50-person team serves a range of ophthalmic sectors, including medical devices, ocular pharmaceuticals, digital technology and others, with a focus on the anterior segment. For more information, please visit core.uwaterloo.ca.

 

MEDIA CONTACTS:
Aimee J. Lewis or Mike McDougall, APR, Fellow PRSA, McDougall Communications for CORE
aimee@mcdougallpr.com +1.585.414.9838  |  mike@mcdougallpr.com +1.585.545.1815

 

 

 

New Paper Examines Top 10 Myths About Fitting Soft Contact Lenses

Clinical and Experimental Optometry Paper Offers Evidence to Dispel Misconceptions Held by Eye Care Practitioners

WATERLOO, ONTARIO, January 25, 2021— A new peer-review paper from the Centre for Ocular Research & Education (CORE) seeks to shift persistent views about contact lenses that are no longer accurate based on current evidence. Addressing common myths and misconceptions in soft contact lens practice (Walsh K, Jones L, Moody K) is published from Clinical and Experimental Optometry, the official journal of Optometry Australia, the New Zealand Association of Optometrists, and the Hong Kong Society of Professional Optometrists.

The work offers contemporary evidence that challenges ten legacy perspectives held by eye care practitioners, which can prevent optimal patient care and business success. Members of the eye care community can download the complete publication at no cost via Open Access.

“In 1992, Nathan Efron explored a variety of common myths and mistruths around the fitting and wearing of contact lenses. Remarkably, three decades later, more than half of the current misconceptions we’ve identified were also acknowledged in those original papers. While there has been extraordinary technological and clinical progress over that same time, it has proven more difficult to shake off some long-held incorrect views and established clinical practices,” said Lyndon Jones, CORE’s director.

The authors grouped the top ten present-day myths into three broad categories—contact lenses and care systems, patient-related concerns, and business focused barriers—then reviewed each with clear evidence-based data and practical guidance. The misconceptions include:

  1. Increasing oxygen transmissibility improves lens comfort,
  2. Hydrogels should no longer be fitted,
  3. Patients will be more successful wearing contact lens materials that demonstrate low levels of deposition,
  4. When a patient reports discomfort, the first—and most appropriate—option is to change the lens,
  5. Young children are less successful with contact lenses,
  6. Multifocal fitting is not successful,
  7. Wearer non-compliance can make contact lens wear just too risky,
  8. Patients with low astigmatism do fine with spherical lenses,
  9. Focusing on growing my contact lens business is too time-consuming,
  10. And my contact lens business will not grow because as many patients as I fit end up dropping out.

Evidence was available to debunk nine of the ten beliefs. This opens the door for eye care practitioners to recommend and successfully fit contact lenses to a wide range of patients, from children through to seniors, using all soft lens material types and replacement frequency options. The literature review also demonstrates the business benefits of contact lens practice through proactive recommendation and paying attention to factors that drive successful wear and reduce drop out.

And while the remaining belief that non-compliance leads to an increased risk of complications holds true, the evidence-base highlights many factors that are modifiable and within the scope of the eye care practitioner to help mitigate such risk. These include appropriate lens recommendations (e.g., daily disposables) and educating wearers to encourage good wear and care practice adherence.

In closing, the authors write that “practitioners have an ever-increasing range of contact lens designs and materials across different replacement frequencies to offer patients interested in becoming contact lens wearers and to then maintain them successfully in contact lenses over many years. Ensuring clinical practice follows the evidence base, which will change over time, is the most appropriate way to help many more patients access the benefits of contact lenses.”

The paper was supported through an educational grant from Johnson & Johnson Vision.

# # #

About the Centre for Ocular Research & Education (CORE)
The Centre for Ocular Research & Education (CORE) was established in 1988 at the University of Waterloo’s School of Optometry & Vision Science. Over the next three decades, the organization evolved from a three-person operation into a thriving hub of basic and applied research, collaborating with sponsors, agencies and academia on advanced biosciences, clinical research and education. Its uncompromising independence and results of the highest quality have been at the heart of many of the most prominent advances in eye health. Today, its approximately 50-person team serves a range of ophthalmic sectors, including medical devices, ocular pharmaceuticals, digital technology and others, with a focus on the anterior segment. For more information, please visit core.uwaterloo.ca.

 

MEDIA CONTACTS:
Aimee J. Lewis or Mike McDougall, APR, Fellow PRSA, McDougall Communications for CORE
aimee@mcdougallpr.com +1.585.414.9838  |  mike@mcdougallpr.com +1.585.545.1815

 

 

 

CORE Appoints Dr. Alex Hui as Head of Biosciences

WATERLOO, ONTARIO, January 5, 2022—The Centre for Ocular Research & Education (CORE) has appointed Alex Hui, OD, PhD, FAAO, as head of Biosciences. Dr. Hui is currently a senior lecturer at the School of Optometry and Vision Science at UNSW Sydney. He will soon relocate to CORE’s facility in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada.

Dr. Alex Hui

“Dr. Hui is a very well respected educator, optometrist, and researcher with the exact skill-set and background to serve as our Biosciences head. His outstanding knowledge of the ocular surface, combined with his extensive lecturing on ocular therapeutic drugs and a PhD in ocular drug delivery, aligns with our ongoing initiatives and mission. We are absolutely delighted to bring Alex back to Waterloo and are excited to have him lead the CORE Biosciences platform,” said Lyndon Jones, PhD, DSc, FCOptom, FAAO, CORE’s director.

Before joining UNSW in 2015, Dr. Hui completed his optometry training and PhD at the University of Waterloo School of Optometry & Vision Science and CORE. He is an author on more than 30 peer reviewed and non-peer reviewed publications and has been an invited speaker at conferences worldwide. In addition to drug delivery systems, his research has been focused on ocular therapeutics, myopia control, and contact lenses. Dr. Hui is also an associate editor for Clinical and Experimental Optometry.

“CORE has continued to build an international reputation for high quality research, which I’ve admired during my seven years in Australia,” said Dr. Hui. “It’s been a privilege to spend time with everyone at UNSW, and I’m excited about this new opportunity to work with a fantastic group of researchers and personnel back in Canada.”

CORE’s current Head of Biosciences Dr. William Ngo has been appointed as an assistant professor at the University of Waterloo’s School of Optometry & Vision Science, reflecting his ever-growing contributions to the field. He will continue to collaborate with CORE and its research team in his chosen area of ocular surface disease.

# # #

About the Centre for Ocular Research & Education (CORE)
The Centre for Ocular Research & Education (CORE) was established in 1988 at the University of Waterloo’s School of Optometry & Vision Science. Over the next three decades, the organization evolved from a three-person operation into a thriving hub of basic and applied research, collaborating with sponsors, agencies and academia on advanced biosciences, clinical research and education. Its uncompromising independence and results of the highest quality have been at the heart of many of the most prominent advances in eye health. Today, its approximately 50-person team serves a range of ophthalmic sectors, including medical devices, ocular pharmaceuticals, digital technology and others, with a focus on the anterior segment. For more information, please visit core.uwaterloo.ca.

MEDIA CONTACTS:
Aimee J. Lewis or Mike McDougall, APR, Fellow PRSA, McDougall Communications for CORE
aimee@mcdougallpr.com +1.585.414.9838  |  mike@mcdougallpr.com +1.585.545.1815

CORE Names “Top 10 of 2021” Scientific Papers for Eye Care Community

Despite Widespread Global Slowdowns in Clinical Research, CORE Perseveres to Reach New Publishing Milestone

WATERLOO, Ontario, December 17, 2021—In a year like no other, the Centre for Ocular Research & Education (CORE) has published a record 66 scientific and clinical educational papers on topics that advance academic and clinical knowledge in optometry and ophthalmology. The organization today announced its “Top 10 of 2021” list, designating particularly valuable works for the global eye care community.

As the COVID-19 pandemic kept workplaces, schools and businesses shuttered worldwide, clinical research was severely impacted. Early pandemic reports indicated that more than 65% of science and technology-related research was paused or delayed due to COVID-related closures. Yet even in the midst of widespread disruption, CORE continued to publish and present topics essential for both current practice and future ophthalmic progress.

“We found a way to overcome another year of pandemic challenges to further evolve and advance ocular science and education, thanks to my incredible colleagues at CORE and our collaborators around the globe,” says CORE Director Lyndon Jones, PhD, DSc, FCOptom, FAAO. “With our record publication volume, it would be easy to overlook some of the most critical pieces of work. The top 10 selections underscore the highest-potential research for eye care professionals, spanning topics such as dry eye, drug delivery, myopia control, eye simulation models, and future contact lens technologies.”

Papers making the “top 10” for 2021 include:

  1. Ocular health of children wearing daily disposable contact lenses over a 6-year period (Woods J, et al.), Contact Lens & Anterior Eye

Fitting pre-teen children with soft contact lenses has become more prevalent worldwide, driven largely by using contact lenses for myopia control. Practitioners are keen to understand how these young eyes adapt to full-time lens wear. This manuscript presents the physiological data from a six-year daily disposable soft lens wearing, global, multi-site trial; CORE was the largest clinical site in this trial. This is the longest prospective contact lens trial reported to date. Children aged 8-12 years were enrolled and with 92 completing the study, the data is representative of 653 lens wearing years. There were no contact lens related serious adverse events. Careful slit-lamp observations were similar after six years to the baseline values.  The results support that children of this age can successfully wear daily disposable soft contact lenses with minimal impact on ocular physiology. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.clae.2020.11.011

  1. Lysozyme Deposition on Contact Lenses in an In Vitro Blink-Simulation Eye Model Versus a Static Vial Deposition Model (Chan V, et al.), Eye & Contact Lens

CORE has considerable expertise in quantifying protein deposition on contact lenses. This paper compares lysozyme deposition on contact lenses using two in vitro models; a static vial versus a sophisticated in vitro eye model with a blinking mechanism. This study showed that the in vitro blink model can be tuned to mimic quantitative lysozyme deposition data from ex vivo studies, which may provide new opportunities for developing and optimizing other ocular models. https://doi.org/10.1097/ICL.0000000000000784

  1. All soft contact lenses are not created equal (Efron N, et al.), Contact Lens & Anterior Eye

Soft contact lenses that have been carefully prescribed by eye care practitioners are sometimes arbitrarily substituted for alternative lenses in the mistaken belief that there is essentially no difference between various lens types. CORE Director Lyndon Jones is a contributor to this broad-ranging, evidence-based review that considers potential complications induced by inappropriate substitution without practitioner oversight. Substitution of 15 of the 16 lens properties considered was found to be related to potential sources of patient dissatisfaction and adverse ocular events. The conclusions presented confirm that a substituted lens may have properties that result in undesirable consequences in respect of vision, ocular health and comfort and that unqualified, unsupervised lens substitution should be avoided.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.clae.2021.101515

  1. Contact lens technologies of the future (Jones L, et al.), Contact Lens & Anterior Eye

Contact lenses in the future will likely have functions other than correction of refractive error. In this extensive review, CORE’s Lyndon Jones and Chau-Minh Phan and colleagues from around the globe report on the use, or potential use, of contact lenses for a wide-range of novel functions. The potential for contacts to be used to detect systemic and ocular surface diseases, treat and manage various ocular conditions and as devices that can correct presbyopia, control the development of myopia or be used for augmented vision are described in detail in the most far-reaching report of its kind to-date. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.clae.2021.02.007

  1. Development of an In Vitro Blink Model for Ophthalmic Drug Delivery (Phan C, et al.), Pharmaceutics

Successful drug therapy via topical ophthalmic administration requires overcoming multiple physical challenges. However, advancements in biomaterials and their application has led to innovative approaches in surmounting these challenges. This paper from the OcuBlink team at CORE describes the development of an eye model for testing drug release from a contact lens on the eye, which allows us to better predict the on-eye performance of ophthalmic formulations and devices. This, in turn, could lead to informing the direction for industry R&D and the development of improved products. https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics13030300

  1. Bulbar redness and dry eye disease: comparison of a validated subjective grading scale and an objective automated method (Schulze M, et al.), Optometry & Vision Science

The number of patients reporting symptoms of dry eye has been increasing steadily, particularly during digital device use. While the majority of diagnostic tests for dry eye focus on tear film assessments, increased levels of ocular redness have also been associated with dry eye. In their study, Marc Schulze and colleagues from CORE used the Oculus K5M and the validated bulbar redness (VBR) scale to evaluate whether objectively and subjectively graded ocular redness levels can be used to discriminate between dry eye and non-dry eye patients. Their findings showed that assessing ocular redness by zone, after asking patients to change their gaze to expose larger conjunctival areas compared to en-face assessments, is of high relevance for redness assessments related to dry eye. This is an assessment that can easily be included into the routine biomicroscopy exam in clinical practice and may be helpful to assess dry eye treatment efficacy. https://doi.org/10.1097/opx.0000000000001638

  1. The Impact of Incubation Conditions on in Vitro Phosphatidylcholine Deposition on Contact Lens Materials (Walther H, et al.), Optometry & Vision Science

Previous work has suggested that more hydrophobic materials (such as silicone hydrogels) may be prone to adsorbing lipids to a greater extent than conventional hydrogel materials. However, deposition of all lipids may not necessarily be detrimental, as lipids such as phosphatidylcholine are important stabilizing components of the tear film. This research by CORE researcher Hendrik Walther and colleagues explores various aspects of lipid uptake that may impact contact lens performance. The results provide important information regarding how to evaluate lipid uptake when undertaking in vitro studies, with length of incubation, lipid concentration in the doping solution and the frequency of replenishment of the lipids all impacting the data obtained. https://doi.org/10.1097/opx.0000000000001680

  1. Clinical practice patterns in the management of dry eye disease: A TFOS international survey (Wolffsohn J, et al.), Ocular Surface

Dry eye disease is one of the most common conditions encountered in eye care. In this paper, CORE was part of an international survey effort to examine the clinical practice patterns of optometrists and ophthalmologists from 51 countries. This paper found that management strategies depended highly on severity and subtype, and on the country. This information allows practitioners from local regions to compare their practice with their peers and identifies potential areas to optimize patient treatment. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jtos.2021.04.011

  1. Optimization of goblet cell density quantification methods (Yang M, et al.), Experimental Eye Research

Goblet cells play a vital role in maintaining ocular surface homeostasis, however, there is no standard method for their quantification. This paper investigated the nuances and various methods for quantifying goblet cell density and was achievable only through a collaboration between the clinical and basic science expertise at CORE. This type of translational research is necessary to advance the clinical diagnosis of dry eye disease at a fundamental level. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.exer.2021.108607

  1. Uptake and release of a multipurpose solution biocide (MAP-D) from hydrogel and silicone hydrogel contact lenses using a radiolabel methodology (Yee A, et al.), Eye & Contact Lens

Multipurpose contact lens solutions contain a variety of biocides that ensure safe disinfection of the lenses overnight. However, their uptake into soft lenses during the overnight soak time and the subsequent release onto the ocular surface during wear have been linked to several complications. Determination of this uptake and release is complicated, as the amounts are small and studying this issue has been dogged by the complexity of the analytical methods required. Alan Yee, a CORE PhD student, reports on a methodology evaluating the uptake and release of a common biocide (myristamidopropyl dimethylamine; MAP-D) using a novel radiolabelled method. The data showed that silicone hydrogel materials absorbed greater amounts of MAP-D compared to hydrogels, but the hydrogel materials released the greatest amount of the biocide. Radioactive labelling of biocides offers a highly sensitive method of assessing the uptake and release profiles of biocides to CL materials. https://doi.org/10.1097/icl.0000000000000724

CORE offers a searchable database of its nearly 2,500 peer-reviewed papers, professional articles, continuing education presentations, and scientific presentations dating back to the early 1980s. That resource is available at https://core.uwaterloo.ca/publications/.

###

About the Centre for Ocular Research & Education (CORE)
The Centre for Ocular Research & Education (CORE) – formerly known as the Centre for Contact Lens Research – was established in 1988 at the University of Waterloo’s School of Optometry & Vision Science. Over the next three decades, the organization evolved from a three-person operation into a thriving hub of basic and applied research, collaborating with sponsors, agencies and academia on advanced biosciences, clinical research and education. Its uncompromising independence and results of the highest quality have been at the heart of many of the most prominent advances in eye health. Today, its approximately 50-person team serves a range of ophthalmic sectors, including medical devices, ocular pharmaceuticals, digital technology and others, with a focus on the anterior segment. For more information, please visit core.uwaterloo.ca.

MEDIA CONTACTS
Aimee J. Lewis or Mike McDougall, APR, Fellow PRSA
McDougall Communications for CORE
aimee@mcdougallpr.com +1.585.414.9838  |  mike@mcdougallpr.com +1.585.434.2150

New Contact Lens Update Addresses Top Pandemic-Related Eye Issues

WATERLOO, Ontario, December 13, 2021—The Centre for Ocular Research & Education (CORE) has published Issue 63 of Contact Lens Update, which explores the COVID-19 pandemic’s impact on five clinically relevant ocular conditions. The latest edition and all past issues are available for free at ContactLensUpdate.com.

Highly pertinent for eye care practitioners worldwide, the issue examines and summarizes how mask wear, home schooling, and remote working may impact patients presenting to clinical practice—and potential prevention and mitigation approaches.

Lyndon Jones

CORE Director Lyndon Jones’ opening editorial provides a thorough review of five possible pandemic-related ocular complications. These cover a potential increase in myopia and dry eye complaints linked to increased digital device use, along with a discussion around whether mask wearing has increased rates of hordeolum and chalazion, dry eye, and dissatisfaction with spectacle wear. The article includes several clinical pearls to help practitioners investigate and manage these conditions.

Rosa Yang

In the feature article, CORE’s Rosa Yang discusses key findings from a paper investigating the progression of myopia in a large sample of school-aged children after COVID-19 home confinement in China. As remote education continues, the findings should interest any practitioners who examine young children and are employing or considering myopia management.

Carole Maldonado-Codina
Carole Maldonado-Codina

The final two contributed pieces discuss the impact of mask wear on the ocular surface and on spectacles fogging. Carole Maldonado-Codina, associate director of Eurolens Research at the University of Manchester, is the author of a recent poster that investigates patient preference between spectacles and contact lenses while wearing a mask.

Keyur Patel
Keyur Patel

Keyur Patel, clinical director at Tompkins Knight & Son Optometrists in the U.K., presents a compelling case study looking at the impact of inappropriate mask-wear on the break-up time of tears over the ocular surface. He then provides highly relevant and timely advice on how this can result in increased symptoms of dry eye that patients may not even vaguely link to their mask use.

“Almost exactly two years after the first reports of a deadly respiratory illness started to emerge out of China, the pandemic continues to dominate our daily lives,” said Dr. Jones. “These changes include children being educated at home, adults working remotely, an increase in digital device use, and mask wearing and social distancing become widespread globally.

“How do these factors impact our eyes? Modifications to our daily lives appear to have a much greater impact than we could have imagined. Contact Lens Update has consolidated and examined the most pronounced changes in detail using an evidence-based approach to provide practitioners with sound, timely clinical advice on how to look for and manage related complications.”

Published six times per year, Contact Lens Update provides a global platform for unbiased clinical insights based in current research. Since 2011, each issue has provided dependable and up-to-date ocular health information for more than 60,000 leading eye care professionals.

In addition to a complete archive of back issues, ContactLensUpdate.com offers a resource library that provides no-cost professional tools, patient resources, images and video. It also houses complimentary technical training videos produced by International Association of Contact Lens Educators, plus an industry glossary. Industry professionals can access the latest issue directly from ContactLensUpdate.com or quickly sign up for email receipt of future issues.

The publication receives support from the educational arms of AlconCooperVision, and Johnson & Johnson Vision.

# # #

About the Centre for Ocular Research & Education (CORE)
The Centre for Ocular Research & Education (CORE) was established in 1988 at the University of Waterloo’s School of Optometry & Vision Science. Over the next three decades, the organization evolved from a three-person operation into a thriving hub of basic and applied research, collaborating with sponsors, agencies and academia on advanced biosciences, clinical research and education. Its uncompromising independence and results of the highest quality have been at the heart of many of the most prominent advances in eye health. Today, its approximately 50-person team serves a range of ophthalmic sectors, including medical devices, ocular pharmaceuticals, digital technology and others, with a focus on the anterior segment. For more information, please visit core.uwaterloo.ca.

MEDIA CONTACTS
Aimee J. Lewis or Mike McDougall, APR, Fellow PRSA, McDougall Communications for CORE
aimee@mcdougallpr.com +1.585.414.9838  |  mike@mcdougallpr.com +1.585.545.1815

New Contact Lens Update Focuses on Dry Eye and Digital Device Use

WATERLOO, Ontario, November 12, 2021—Issue 62 of Contact Lens Update, now available for free from the Centre for Ocular Research & Education (CORE), explores the impact of digital device use on the eye. Each story provides a unique perspective on whether increasing use of screens by adults and children affects ocular comfort and if such behaviors can ultimately lead to dry eye disease.

Highly relevant for an increasingly screen-dependent society, the issue reviews and summarizes current research to provide practical, evidence-based advice for eye care practitioners to use with patients.

James Wolffsohn

James Wolffsohn’s opening editorial provides a thorough review of the possible links between dry eye disease and digital device use. He discusses the prevalence of dry eye disease in general and in digital device users specifically, and reviews the role of blinking. He then highlights the evidence for changes to the meibomian glands that have been associated with screen use.

Bridgitte Shen Lee

In the feature article, Bridgitte Shen Lee, co-founder of Vision Optique, explains key findings from the paper she co-authored that examines the dry eye-screen relationship. This includes peer-to-peer advice to help manage patients who present with the issue.

Ngozi Chidi-Egboka

Two other articles focus on children, illustrating how increased screen use is impacting ocular findings and comfort at an early age. Ngozi Chidi-Egboka, a PhD candidate at UNSW Sydney, shares the results of a recent poster that investigates ocular comfort and blinking in children while using a smartphone. She describes how blink rate and reports of ocular symptoms occurred within just ten minutes of use.

Leslie O’Dell

Long hours of screen use associated with early and significant meibomian gland changes are highlighted in the case study from Leslie O’Dell, medical director of Medical Optometry America.  She shares clinical insights from her experience of managing a nine-year-old who experienced these alterations, which serves as an important reminder for proactive and early investigation across all ages.

Over the past decade, the percentage of U.S. adults who report owning a smartphone has skyrocketed from 35% to 85%, according to the Pew Research Center. Among children and teens, the percentage who spent more than four hours per day with electronic devices approximately doubled last year compared to before the pandemic, according to research from the Global Myopia Awareness Coalition and Ipsos.

“Digital screen use has markedly increased over time, further accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Lyndon Jones, CORE’s director. “We are only just beginning to understand the full impact that such intensity may have on the ocular surface of adults and children. This issue consolidates some of the latest knowledge and practical guidance, helping eye care practitioners immediately translate research into better care and outcomes.”

Published six times per year, Contact Lens Update provides a global platform for unbiased clinical insights based in current research. Since 2011, each issue has provided dependable and up-to-date ocular health information for more than 60,000 leading eye care professionals.

In addition to a complete archive of back issues, ContactLensUpdate.com offers a resource library that provides no-cost professional tools, patient resources, images and video. It also houses complementary technical training videos produced by International Association of Contact Lens Educators, plus an industry glossary. Industry professionals can access the latest issue directly from ContactLensUpdate.com or quickly sign up for email receipt of future issues.

The publication receives support from the educational arms of AlconCooperVision, and Johnson & Johnson Vision.

# # #

About the Centre for Ocular Research & Education (CORE)

The Centre for Ocular Research & Education (CORE) was established in 1988 at the University of Waterloo’s School of Optometry & Vision Science. Over the next three decades, the organization evolved from a three-person operation into a thriving hub of basic and applied research, collaborating with sponsors, agencies and academia on advanced biosciences, clinical research and education. Its uncompromising independence and results of the highest quality have been at the heart of many of the most prominent advances in eye health. Today, its approximately 50-person team serves a range of ophthalmic sectors, including medical devices, ocular pharmaceuticals, digital technology and others, with a focus on the anterior segment. For more information, please visit core.uwaterloo.ca.

MEDIA CONTACTS
Aimee J. Lewis or Mike McDougall, APR, Fellow PRSA, McDougall Communications for CORE
aimee@mcdougallpr.com +1.585.414.9838  |  mike@mcdougallpr.com +1.585.545.1815