Drug Delivery Vehicle for Treatment of Glaucoma and Other Eye Diseases (RFT-263)

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Invention Summary


Scientists at NDSU (in collaboration with University of Central Florida) have developed a potential ophthalmic drug delivery vehicle for treatment of glaucoma and other ocular diseases. The method uses functionalized cerium oxide nanoparticles (nanoceria), which can be combined with small molecule active ingredients to form a complex that facilitates higher efficiency delivery of drugs into the eye. This technology may provide an alternative to injections for delivering medicines into the eye.

The mechanism of improved drug delivery is thought to be the longer residence time on the eye surface, combined with sustained release that will be promoted using nanoceria. Together, these features are expected to provide significantly enhanced delivery of active ingredients to their site of action. Additionally, a fluorophore can be attached to nanoceria, to enable the tracking of the nanoparticles.

Stage of Development

The technology has been evaluated at the lab scale. We are seeking a licensee that will conduct animal testing to confirm the anticipated benefits of the nanoceria complex.


  • Efficient drug delivery into the eye using drops or gel placed on the eye surface
  • Avoid injecting or otherwise physically penetrating the eye surface
  • Reduce dosage because less is lost via eye drainage
  • Trace the particles using fluorescent tags so accumulation and targeting in vivo can be followed
  • Sustained release delivery mechanism can reduce frequency of treatment
  • Antioxidant properties of nanoceria provides additional benefit


Treatment of glaucoma and of other ocular diseases requiring drug delivery into the eye

Patent Status

This technology is patented with fully preserved US patent rights (issued US patents 7,959,949 and 8,337,898), and is available for licensing/partnering opportunities.


Henry Nowak, Technology Manager

NDSURF Tech Key RFT, 263, RFT263

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