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    Subretinal Stem Cell Implant for Geographic Atrophy

    ASRS 2018

    In this interview from ASRS 2018, Dr. Amir Kashani describes the interim safety and feasibility findings from a phase 1/2a trial of a subretinal stem cell implant for geographic atrophy. The implant—a layer of human embryonic stem cell-derived retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) cells on an ultrathin supportive structure—is designed to replace the layer of cells that degenerates in patients with dry AMD. Dr. Kashani and colleagues delivered the implant into the retina of 5 patients and followed them for 1 year. Their findings demonstrate that the implantion surgery is feasible and well tolerated. One patient gained 17 letters of visual acuity, 2 patients showed improvements in visual function and the remaining 2 patients will undergo their 1-year follow-up evaluation in the near future.

    Relevant Financial Disclosures: Dr. Kashani receives grant support from the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine, which helped fund the clinical trial.