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The World's First Innovative Drug With Bispecific Antibodies for Retinal Diseases Injected in Shanghai


Source: Xinmin Evening News Author: Zuo Yan 2024-03-14 09:51:43


Fundus disease is the most common irreversible blinding eye disease, with over 40 million patients in China. Among them, diabetes macular edema and neovascular (wet) age-related macular degeneration are the main types of fundus diseases. For a long period of time, intraocular injection of anti VEGF single target drugs was the main way to treat these two types of diseases, but many patients were unable to achieve ideal treatment results due to difficulties in adhering to monthly or bi monthly high-frequency injections. However, this group of patients now have new medication options.


Recently, the team led by Professor Sun Xiaodong, director of the Ophthalmology Center of Shanghai General Hospital, completed the injection of faracimab for the indication of diabetes macular edema for a patient with diabetes macular edema. This is also the first batch of injection of the drug completed in China. It is reported that the drug can enhance vascular stability while inhibiting neovascularization, and the injection interval for patients can be extended to 3 to 4 months, which is beneficial for enhancing treatment compliance and improving overall prognosis. The drug has been approved in China for the treatment of diabetes macular edema and neovascular (wet) age-related macular degeneration at the end of 2023. The patient Mr. Wang (pseudonym) who received injection has been suffering from macular edema due to high blood sugar for many years. As a typical patient with diabetes and macular edema, in the past few years, Mr. Wang has been receiving treatment in the Ophthalmology Center of Shanghai General Hospital. He has to inject anti VEGF agents every two months.

According to Prof. Sun Xiaodong, there are about 110 million diabetes patients in China at present, of which about 1/3 are diabetes patients with diabetes retinopathy, and about 1/3 are diabetes retinopathy patients with diabetes macular edema. In other words, there are as many as 10 million patients with diabetes macular edema in China. At present, intraocular injection of anti VEGF drugs is the first line plan for the treatment of diabetes macular edema, and some patients will also cooperate with hormone therapy and laser therapy. However, due to the fact that fundus disease is a multi-pathogenic factor disease, and currently most types of anti VEGF drugs are single pathway therapies, targeted therapy targeting only a single pathogenic factor VEGF family has certain limitations in clinical practice. Meanwhile, the frequency of injections at least once every two months is a significant test for the convenience and affordability of patients seeking medical treatment.


"The" 14th Five Year National Eye Health Plan (2021-2025) "has officially added fundus diseases as an important disease for prevention and control, and clearly stated that attention should be paid to key populations such as the elderly to reduce disease burden and blindness rate," said Prof. Sun Xiaodong, As a listed unit of the National Clinical Medical Center for Ophthalmic Diseases, the Ophthalmology Center of Shanghai General Hospital has been exploring the forefront of research in the field of fundus diseases, hoping to find a treatment plan with stronger efficacy and longer dosing intervals. This application of Faracimab is the world's first bispecific antibody drug for intraocular injection, which targets both anti angiopoietin-2 (an) and anti-angiopoietin-2 (ang-2) and vascular endothelial growth factor a (vegf-a) simultaneously, which can inhibit neovascularization while enhancing vascular stability, enhancing long-term visual benefits, and improving patient quality of life. In multiple Phase 3 clinical trials, the advantages of stronger efficacy and longer dosing intervals have been demonstrated.


In addition to treated patients, newly treated patients can also benefit from new drugs. "If effective drugs can be used to improve clinical lesions in a timely manner before retinal structural damage occurs, it will have a more positive impact on subsequent patients' vision improvement and disease recovery." Sun Xiaodong told reporters, "I hope innovative drugs can benefit more Chinese patients with retinal diseases, bringing them long-term visual benefits and better quality of life."

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