Revolutionizing ophthalmic drug delivery systems


New Orleans, La. — A study presented this week at the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology’s (ARVO) 2023 Annual Meeting in New Orleans, La. included a 3D printed microfluidic chip that can be used to evaluate the release of ocular drugs from medicated contact lenses. Even though many researchers are studying how contact lenses can be used for other purposes besides cosmetic uses and vision correction, creating drug delivery lenses has been difficult due to the lack of appropriate testing methods. In this study, the researchers describe a more relevant, high-throughput testing approach.

Megala Ramasamy, BTech, MSc, designed the microfluidic chips in two different ways using a low-cost commercial 3D printer. The first method involved direct 3D printing of the chip as top and bottom portions bounded by a resin layer, followed by UV curing. In a subsequent design iteration, a silicone material was cast into the reusable 3D printed molds. The features of the chip include a mount-shaped structure where the contact lens to be tested is placed. In a feasibility study, a contact lens soaked in red dye was measured for the release of dye over a period of 24 hours using the fabricated chip.

"This study developed a microfluidic chip using 3D printing to test the release of ocular drugs from soft contact lenses, which was a cost- and time-efficient approach with promising results.” said Megala, “This innovative testing platform will help revolutionize contact lens testing by providing a low-cost, rapid, and high-throughput approach to developing new ocular biomaterials."

  • Abstract title: Fabrication of a microfluidic chip for ophthalmic drug delivery studies using 3D printing
  • Presentation start/end time: Monday, April 24, 11:30 – 11:45 am CT
  • Location: 252-254
  • Presentation number: 1336


The Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO) is the largest eye and vision research organization in the world. Members include approximately 10,000 eye and vision researchers from over 75 countries. ARVO advances research worldwide into understanding the visual system and preventing, treating and curing its disorders. Learn more at

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Jenniffer Scherhaufer