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Dietary Riboflavin (Vitamin B-2) and Cornea Cross-Linking

The safety and scientific validity of this study is the responsibility of the study sponsor and investigators. Listing a study does not mean it has been evaluated by the U.S. Federal Government. Read our disclaimer for details. Identifier: NCT03095235
Recruitment Status : Unknown
Verified April 2019 by John Jarstad, M.D., University of Missouri-Columbia.
Recruitment status was:  Recruiting
First Posted : March 29, 2017
Last Update Posted : April 22, 2019
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
John Jarstad, M.D., University of Missouri-Columbia

Brief Summary:
Corneal ectasia is characterized by irregularity and thinning of the cornea, causing the cornea to bulge forward and cause distorted vision and impaired visual acuity. Corneal ectasia is a complication after refractive (LASIK) surgery. It is also the primary problem in keratoconus, a gradually progressive inherited condition that typically is manifested in young adulthood, more commonly in women. Treatment approaches to stabilize the cornea's shape include rigid contact lenses, surgical implantation of stiff plastic intrastromal corneal ring segments, a collagen cross-linking procedure and, in severe cases, cornea transplantation. The collagen cross-linking procedure involves topical application of a concentrated riboflavin (vitamin B2) solution after the corneal epithelium is scraped, followed by ultraviolet (UV) light exposure. UV light stimulates riboflavin to form new bonds (cross links) between the cornea's connective tissue, giving the cornea additional strength to maintain its shape and prevent the need for transplantation. The cost of one treatment using this system is $2,500 to $3,500. A small prospective study including 7 patients with keratoconus was started on a trial of oral riboflavin and 15 minutes of natural sunlight exposure daily. These patients reported no adverse effects and preliminary results showed corneal stabilization and/or corneal flattening in all 7 patients It is hypothesized that dietary riboflavin and natural sunlight is as effective in corneal crosslinking as the currently FDA approved Avedro therapy. If the clinical study confirms the investigators' early observations of the benefits of this approach, coupled with animal studies that document corneal cross-linking, the investigators will have data to pursue funding for larger clinical and animal studies. This has the potential to save millions of dollars in health care costs and ease the burden of treatment in patients who require therapy to induce corneal cross-linking to stabilize the cornea's shape.

Condition or disease Intervention/treatment Phase
Keratoconus Cornea Ectasia Dietary Supplement: Dietary riboflavin Not Applicable

Detailed Description:
Corneal ectasia as a complication from refractive (LASIK) surgery as well as keratoconus is a slowly progressive condition that results in high patient morbidity. Treatment options aim to stabilize the shape of the cornea using rigid contact lenses, surgical insertion of stiff plastic intrastromal rings, corneal cross linking, and ultimately corneal transplant in severe patients. The recently FDA approved "Dresden Protocol" involves painful cornea scraping followed by application of concentrated Riboflavin, followed by immediate collagen cross linking with UV light exposure which results in shortening and thickening of the collagen fibrils, and therefore a stronger, stiffer cornea. Avedro has demonstrated an average cornea flattening (K max reduction) of 1.4 diopters and 1.7diopters in two different studies. The current cost of Avedro therapy is between $2500 -$3500 per treatment. This is considered experimental at this time and therefore is not covered by any insurance.To spare the patient the severe pain involved in the current procedure, and to avoid the high cost (Avedro is not covered by any medical insurance), the investigator started 7 patients with keratoconus from 2011-2015 in his private practice in Seattle on a trial of oral riboflavin (100 mg or 400 mg daily) and 15 minutes of sunlight exposure daily. No adverse effects have ever been reported with high-dose dietary riboflavin supplements. The results of this preliminary trial are remarkable. During follow-up from 6 months to 5 years, all 7 patients have had corneal stabilization and/or corneal flattening. One patient experienced flattening of the cornea by 1.5 Diopters, comparable to the best results of the Avedro system. A limited animal study is currently underway to document that corneal cross-linking occurs in response to dietary riboflavin and UV exposure from the sun. This clinical study would expand the promising preliminary findings to a larger sample size. This has the potential to save millions of dollars in health care costs and ease the burden of treatment in patients who require therapy to induce corneal cross-linking to stabilize the cornea's shape.

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Study Type : Interventional  (Clinical Trial)
Estimated Enrollment : 24 participants
Allocation: N/A
Intervention Model: Single Group Assignment
Masking: None (Open Label)
Primary Purpose: Treatment
Official Title: Dietary Riboflavin (Vitamin B-2) and Cornea Cross-Linking
Actual Study Start Date : May 1, 2017
Estimated Primary Completion Date : January 2022
Estimated Study Completion Date : January 2022

Arm Intervention/treatment
Experimental: Treatment with riboflavin
Patients will take 400 mg dietary riboflavin per day and go outside without sunglasses for 15 minutes per day to evaluate the effects of riboflavin B2 and natural UV light from sun exposure on cornea cross linking and stabilization of ectatic disease.
Dietary Supplement: Dietary riboflavin
Dietary riboflavin is vitamin B2. It has been shown to be safe in children in the treatment of migraines at doses of 400 mg per day. There are no known documented side effects
Other Name: Vitamin B2

Primary Outcome Measures :
  1. Degree of corneal steepening [ Time Frame: 6 months ]
    Keratometry measures the degree of astigmatism of the cornea to monitor the degree of cornea steepening

Secondary Outcome Measures :
  1. Best corrected visual acuity [ Time Frame: 6 months ]
    Measures the best vision the patient is able to see at that time

Information from the National Library of Medicine

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Ages Eligible for Study:   12 Years and older   (Child, Adult, Older Adult)
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   Yes

Inclusion Criteria:

  • patients identified as having keratoconus or post refractive cornea ectasia with astigmatism of 1.5 Diopters or greater.

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Known sensitivity to riboflavin, sunlight.
  • patients on medications with side effects of increased sunlight sensitivity should discuss participation with their prescribing provider prior to participation

Information from the National Library of Medicine

To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the contact information provided by the sponsor.

Please refer to this study by its identifier (NCT number): NCT03095235

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Contact: John S Jarstad, MD (573) 884-2876
Contact: Van D Nguyen, MD (573) 884-2876

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United States, Missouri
University of Missouri Recruiting
Columbia, Missouri, United States, 65212
Contact: Lindsey M McDaniel, MD    573-882-1506      
Contact: John Jarstad, MD    5738821506      
Sponsors and Collaborators
University of Missouri-Columbia
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Principal Investigator: John S Jarstad, MD University of Missouri- Department of Ophthalmology
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Responsible Party: John Jarstad, M.D., Associate Professor, Department of Ophthalmology, University of Missouri-Columbia Identifier: NCT03095235    
Other Study ID Numbers: 2006390
First Posted: March 29, 2017    Key Record Dates
Last Update Posted: April 22, 2019
Last Verified: April 2019
Individual Participant Data (IPD) Sharing Statement:
Plan to Share IPD: No

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Studies a U.S. FDA-regulated Drug Product: No
Studies a U.S. FDA-regulated Device Product: No
Keywords provided by John Jarstad, M.D., University of Missouri-Columbia:
cornea ectasia
Additional relevant MeSH terms:
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Corneal Diseases
Dilatation, Pathologic
Eye Diseases
Pathological Conditions, Anatomical
Physiological Effects of Drugs
Vitamin B Complex
Photosensitizing Agents
Dermatologic Agents