Contribution of saccadic motion to intravitreal drug transport: Theoretical analysis

Ram K. Balachandran, Victor H. Barocas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations


Purpose: The vitreous humor liquefies with age and readily sloshes during eye motion. The objective was to develop a computational model to determine the effect of sloshing on intravitreal drug transport for transscleral and intra-vitreal drug sources at various locations Methods: A finite element model based on a telescopic implicit envelope tracking scheme was developed to model drug dispersion. Flow velocities due to saccadic oscillations were solved for and were used to simulate drug dispersion. Results: Saccades induced a three-dimensional flow field that indicates intense drug dispersion in the vitreous. Model results showed that the time scale for transport decreased for the sloshing vitreous when compared to static vitreous. Macular concentrations for the sloshing vitreous were found be much higher than that for the static vitreous. For low viscosities the position of the intravitreal source did not have a big impact on drug distribution. Conclusion: Model results show that care should be taken when extrapolating animal data, which are mostly done on intact vitreous, to old patients whose vitreous might be a liquid. The decrease in drug transport time scales and changes in localized concentrations should be considered when deciding on treatment modalities and dosing strategies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1049-1064
Number of pages16
JournalPharmaceutical research
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2011

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the Institute for Engineering and Medicine at the University of Minnesota and by the National Institute for Health (R03 EB007815). Simulations were done with the help of the resources provided by the Minnesota Supercomputing Institute (MSI) at the University of Minnesota.


  • age-related macular degeneration
  • transscleral drug delivery
  • vitrectomy
  • vitreous liquefaction


Dive into the research topics of 'Contribution of saccadic motion to intravitreal drug transport: Theoretical analysis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this