Experimental Drug Shows Promise for Sight-Stealing Eye Condition

Animal tests showed fewer injections needed to treat age-related macular degeneration

By Steven Reinberg
HealthDay Reporter

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 18, 2017 (HealthDay News) — An experimental drug may one day make treatment simpler for patients suffering from vision-threatening age-related macular degeneration, researchers say.
So far, the drug — called AXT107 — has been only tested on mice and rabbits, but it requires far fewer injections than current therapy to prevent vision loss. Current treatment requires frequent injections directly into the eye.
“We anticipate injection of AXT107 in humans may have a substantially longer effect than current treatment,” said lead researcher Dr. Peter Campochiaro. He’s a professor of ophthalmology at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore.
“Instead of eye injections every four to six weeks, we hope it would be several months between injections,” he said.
The drug test in rabbits lasted only two months, but the drug appeared both safe and effective, Campochiaro said.
Researchers hope to start the first human trials later this year. This phase 1 trial would test the safety of the drug in people, but further tests would be required to see how effective it is, Campochiaro said.
Research with animals does not always produce similar results in people.
Age-related macular degeneration is a common eye condition and a leading cause of vision loss among people age 60 and older, according to the U.S. National Institutes of Health.
The condition causes damage to the macula, a small spot near the center of the retina and the part of the eye needed for sharp vision.
In some people, age-related macular degeneration advances so slowly that vision loss doesn’t occur for a long time. In others, the disease progresses faster and may lead to a loss of vision in one or both eyes, according to the NIH….
Read more: https://consumer.healthday.com/eye-care-information-13/eye-and-vision-problem-news-295/experimental-drug-shows-promise-for-sight-stealing-eye-condition-718809.html
Source: Health Day
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