The year 2018 had its share of groundbreaking research in age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Here is a brief overview of what’s been presented or published within the past 12 months.
Jennifer Abbasi, senior staff writer, JAMA Medical News, and Feyza Sancar, PhD, Editor of JAMA Medical News, evaluated all the original research published across the entire realm of the JAMA network to discuss the most-read topic in each of the journals. In ophthalmology, that was the work of the Everest II Study Group.
A randomized clinical trial compared ranibizumab with or without verteporfin photodynamic therapy (PDT) for the treatment of polypoidal choroidal vasculopathy (PCV).1 This particular type of age-related macular degeneration is common among Asian patients. (PCV is an exudative retinal disease characterized by an abnormal subretinal pigment epithelial network of vessels of choroidal origin, ending in aneurysmal dilatations. PCV can lead to chronic, multiple, recurrent serosanguineous detachments of the retinal pigment epithelium and retina.) If left untreated, the long-term visual prognosis of patients with PCV is poor.
“The researchers found that combining intravitreal ranibizumab with PDT resulted in greater visual acuity improvement compared with ranibizumab alone,” Abbasi said. The combination resulted in an improvement of 8.1 letters, compared with 5.1 letters with monotherapy treatment.
According to the study authors, after 12 months, the combination therapy “was not only noninferior but also superior to ranibizumab monotherapy… and superior in complete polyp regression while requiring fewer injections.”1
Vitreous hemorrhage was the only serious ocular adverse event.
The full list of top-read JAMA publications in 2018 (and the editors’ assessments) is available here.
1. Koh A, Lai TYY, Takahashi K, et al. Efficacy and Safety of Ranibizumab With or Without Verteporfin Photodynamic Therapy for Polypoidal Choroidal Vasculopathy: A Randomized Clinical Trial. JAMA Ophthalmol. 2017;135:1206-13.
2. Two-year data for Novartis brolucizumab reaffirm superiority versus aflibercept in reducing retinal fluid in patients with nAMD. Available at: https://novartis.gcs-web.com/Two-year-data-for-Novartis-brolucizumab-reaffirm-superiority-versus-aflibercept-in-reducing-retinal-fluid-in-patients-with-nAMD Accessed Feb. 13, 2019. Basel, Switzerland: Novartis, 2018.
3. Dugel PU, Jaffe GJ, Sallstig P, et al. Brolucizumab Versus Aflibercept in Participants with Neovascular Age-Related Macular Degeneration: A Randomized Trial. Ophthalmology. 2017;124:1296-304.
4. Novartis. Novartis brolucizumab (RTH258) demonstrates superiority versus aflibercept in key secondary endpoint measures of disease activity in nAMD, a leading cause of blindness. Available at: https://www.novartis.com/news/media-releases/novartis-brolucizumab-rth258-demonstrates-superiority-versus-aflibercept-key Accessed Dec. 19, 2017. Basel, Switzerland: Novartis, 2017.
5. Genentech Unveils Positive Phase II Results for the Port Delivery System with Ranibizumab (PDS), the First-Ever Eye Implant to Achieve Sustained Delivery of a Biologic Medicine to Treat People With Wet Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD). Available at: https://www.gene.com/media/press-releases/14739/2018-07-25/genentech-unveils-positive-phase-ii-resu Accessed Feb. 13, 2019. South San Francisco, CA: Genentech, 2018
6. New STAIRWAY Study Data Shows Potential for Extended Durability With Faricimab in Wet Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD). Available at: https://www.gene.com/media/press-releases/14762/2018-10-27/new-stairway-study-data-shows-potential- Accessed Feb. 13, 2019. South San Francisco, CA: Genentech, 2018.