• Eyedrops Investigated for Choroidal Neovascularization

    Written By: Jean Shaw and selected by Deepak P. Edward, MD

    Journal Highlights

    Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Sciences
    2017;58(5):2578-2590

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    In a preclinical study, Cogan et al. compared 2 methods of delivering anti–vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) drugs for the treatment of cho­roidal neovascularization: intravitreal injections and topical administration. They found that their topical eyedrops, which contained cell-penetrating pep­tides (CPPs) as well as an anti-VEGF drug, were as effective as intravitreal injections in delivering medication to the posterior segment of animal eyes.

    In the first phase of this study, the researchers investigated CPP toxicity in 3 cell cultures: rat retinal, adult human retinal pigment epithelial, and adult human corneal fibroblast. They found no evidence of toxicity after 3 days in culture.

    In the study’s second phase, the researchers applied eyedrops that contained CPPs and either bevacizumab or ranibizumab to rat, mouse, and pig eyes. The results indicate that the CPP-drug complex can access retinal tissues and effectively attenuate neo­vascularization, matching the effective­ness of a single intravitreal injection. However, the effect of topical delivery may be short lived: In the rat model, the anti-VEGF drug was cleared from the retina by 24 hours. This suggests that daily dosing would be necessary to sustain therapeutic concentrations of the drug in the eye.

    The researchers concluded that their eyedrops could have a significant impact on the treatment of neovascular age-related macular degeneration by revo­lutionizing drug delivery options.

    The original article can be found here.