Jan 22, 2024

Ocular gene therapy: The good, the bad, and the maybe

David Eichenbaum, MD, discussed the status of the technology at the Retina 2024 meeting in Maui.

Ocular gene therapy is not yet ready for prime time, according to David Eichenbaum, MD, who discussed the status of the technology at the Retina 2024 meeting in Maui. He is Director of Research, Retina Vitreous Associates of Florida, and a Volunteer Collaborative Associate Professor, at Morsani College of Medicine, University of South Florida, Tampa.

“We’re still in the infancy of gene therapy. The potential of gene therapy is very exciting,” he said.

In his presentation, Eichenbaum defined gene therapy and described its use in common retinal diseases.

The Good

In common retinal disease, he explained, the approach is gene augmentation, ie, in neovascular and atrophic macular degeneration and diabetic retinopathy the cells inside the eye are altered to become biofactories to produce therapeutic protein. This is thought to be better than frequently intravitreally injecting therapeutic proteins into the eye routinely as done for wet macular degeneration and diabetes and recently for atrophic macular degeneration with geographic atrophy.

The potential positives of gene therapy are the possibility for a single treatment, the absence of indwelling devices, and continuous protein production forever, the last of which may also be a drawback.

Read more: https://www.ophthalmologytimes.com/view/ocular-gene-therapy-the-good-the-bad-and-the-maybe

Source: Ophthalmology Times- the article is their property

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