MAR 29, 2019
Cataract/Anterior Segment, Comprehensive Ophthalmology, Cornea/External Disease, Uveitis
A weekly roundup of ophthalmic news from around the web.
Capturing everyone’s hearts this week: Charlie, an 11-year-old blind golden retriever, and Maverick, his 4-month-old “seeing eye dog.” Charlie had his eyes removed due to glaucoma-related discomfort a few years back. Enter Maverick who, after a rocky start, began helping Charlie find lost toys during playtime and supporting him during walks. Their owners told NBC Philadelphia, “When they would play, Maverick would realize that Charlie would lose the toy sometimes, so [Maverick] would pick it up and put it back in front of him to re-engage playtime.” The duo have been seen all over the news this week and now fans can follow their adventures on Instagram. NBC Philadelphia
Reproxalap eyedrops could skirt the need for steroids in people with dry eye and seasonal allergies, according to findings from the phase 3 ALLEVIATE trial. The aldehyde-trapping formula soothed ocular itching (as determined on the handy ocular itch score curve) in 200 patients, suggesting the drops could relieve symptoms that fail to respond to antihistamines. Reproxalap is also undergoing clinical trials for dry eye and noninfectious anterior uveitis, with results expected soon. Aldeyra Therapeutics
The oral treatment AKST4290, formerly known as ALK4290, improves vision in people with neovascular AMD, Alkahest reported at the Retina World Congress this week. After 6 weeks of treatment, the drug maintained or improved BCVA in 83% of participants’ eyes, with an average of 7 letters gained. The company explained that the small molecule could replace “burdensome” intravitreal injections. Alkahest
An adhesive called GelCORE could repair eye injuries without the need for surgery, researchers reported in Science Advances. The gel is packed with light-activated chemicals that seal cuts or ulcers on the cornea and promote tissue regeneration. “We wanted this material to allow the cells of the cornea to mesh with the adhesive and to regenerate over time, to mimic something as close to the native cornea as possible,” said lead investigator Reza Dana, MD, Director of the Cornea and Refractive Surgery Service at Mass Eye and Ear. Massachusetts Eye and Ear, Science Advances
Alcon has acquired PowerVision, a maker of fluid-based IOLs for cataract surgery patients. Most presbyopia-correcting IOLs distribute light between different focal points, but PowerVision’s lenses use the natural contraction of eye muscles to help the patient focus on near, intermediate or far objects. “By treating cataracts and restoring natural, continuous range of vision, this intraocular lens may be the preferred IOL for cataract surgery patients who desire spectacle independence,” said Michael Onuscheck, Alcon’s President of Global Business and Innovation. The deal closed at $285 million. Alcon