The Role of sGC activators as ocular hypotensive agents

Dorette Ellis, PhD
University of Florida (Gainesville, FL)
Year Awarded:
Grant Duration:
April 1, 2005 to March 31, 2007
Award Amount:
Grant Reference ID:
Award Type:
Award Region:
US Southeastern

The Role of sGC activators as ocular hypotensive agents


Researchers have shown that topical application of nitric oxide to rabbit and monkey eyes causes significant decreases in intraocular pressure. This would suggest that nitric oxide could be used to treat high intraocular pressure in glaucoma. However, higher doses of nitric oxide are less effective than lower doses and constant use of some nitric oxide donors result in tolerance. Nitric oxide binds to its target enzyme called soluble guanylate cyclase causing the formation of cGMP, and subsequent activation of other proteins and effects. There are gaps in our knowledge about the involvement of nitric oxide and soluble guanylate cyclase, and the role of nitric oxide in glaucoma. A better understanding of the interaction between soluble guanylate cyclase activators, their target enzyme, and down stream effectors will lead to new strategies in the treatment of glaucoma.


Our significant contribution to the understanding of how NO regulate aqueous humor dynamics is evidenced by the publication of our first paper (as an independent laboratory, doing independent research) in The American Journal of Physiology, Cell Physiology, June 2008 [PMID:nd][link not available] This contribution has also been recognized by The Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology, 2008 Annual Meeting Program Committee, Physiology and Pharmacology. We were invited to present 2 papers as described above.
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