Allergan and Molecular Partners have announced the release of two positive clinical trials of a new treatment for wet age-related macular degeneration (wAMD). The trials, named SEQUOIA and CEDAR, demonstrated that the biological drug Abicipar is equal to Genentech’s Lucentis (ranibizumab), with the added benefit that Abicipar treatments are effective at up to 12-week dosages. This is longer than Lucentis (4 weeks), Avastin (6 weeks), and Eylea (8 weeks), the three currently available drugs for treatment of wAMD.
One caveat is that incidence of intraocular inflammation was found to be higher with Abicipar than Lucentis. The researchers are further analyzing these results as SEQUOIA and CEDAR clinical trials continue for a second year. Filing for a Biologics License Applications (BLA) is planned for the first half of 2019.
“Abicipar could transform the way physicians manage AMD with anti-VEGF therapy,” said Raj Maturi, MD, Midwest Eye Institute & Associate Professor Ophthalmology, Indiana University School of Medicine. “Today’s anti-VEGFs were designed for monthly or bimonthly dosing. In the real world, patients have difficulty adhering to the schedule, which places their vision at risk . . . Abicipar could be the first and only 12- week anti-VEGF treatment that improves visual outcomes in a real world setting for a large number of AMD patients,”
SOURCE: Press release