Newly-published peer-reviewed paper shows durasert device was neuroprotectant in retinitis pigmentosa model

Apr 14, 2010

pSivida Corp. a developer of ophthalmic sustained release drug delivery products, has said that a recently-published peer reviewed scientific paper showed that a sustained release Durasert drug delivery device releasing the steroid fluocinolone acetonide (FA) in the back of the eye preserved retinal function in a retinitis pigmentosa model.

pSivida Corp. a developer of ophthalmic sustained release drug delivery products, has said that a recently-published peer reviewed scientific paper showed that a sustained release Durasert drug delivery device releasing the steroid fluocinolone acetonide (FA) in the back of the eye preserved retinal function in a retinitis pigmentosa model.

Dr Paul Ashton, CEO of pSivida Corp., who co authored the paper with Inna V. Glymbia, Alexander Kennedy and Gary Abrams of Wayne State University, Kresge Eye Institute in Detroit and Raymond Iezzi of the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, used pSivida's Durasert technology to study the neuroprotective properties of low-dose sustained-release intravitreous FA as a means of reducing retinal neuroinflammation, preventing cell death and preserving retinal function. Retinitis pigmentosa is a hereditary condition that affects approximately 100,000 individuals in the US. There is presently no known cure or effective treatment for the condition, which causes gradual loss of peripheral vision and night vision and eventually most individuals become legally blind.

“This is very encouraging,” said Dr Ashton, “and we intend to pursue further studies using our technologies for the treatment of eye diseases for which there currently are very few effective treatments.” pSivida has developed two of the only three FDA approved ophthalmic sustained release drug delivery products, Retisert for the treatment of posterior uveitis and Vitrasert for the treatment of Aids-related CMV retinitis, both of which are licensed to Bausch & Lomb. The company's third product, Iluvien for the treatment of diabetic macular oedema is licensed to Alimera Sciences which is conducting Phase III fully recruited trials and expects to submit a New Drug Application to the FDA in the second quarter of this year. If approved, Iluvien will be the first FDA approved drug for the treatment of DME.

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