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This week in optometry: July 10-July 14


Catch up on what happened in optometry during the week of July 10-July 14.

Catch up with what Optometry Times®' shared this week:

Close up of green eye with mascara on eye lashes (Adobe Stock/chettythomas)

Adobe Stock/chettythomas

Optometry news

New horizons in interventional glaucoma

Neda Shamie, MD

Interventional glaucoma is often described as a proactive rather than reactive mind-set, with a more aggressive approach to early procedural intervention over a reliance on polypharmaceutical options in the mild to moderate spectrum of glaucoma. It encompasses laser treatments, novel drug delivery systems, and the large and growing category of minimally invasive glaucoma surgery (MIGS).

Many of the current MIGS procedures must be performed at the time of cataract surgery or require a clear corneal incision, which puts them squarely within the purview of cataract surgeons. However, there are several barriers that have contributed to slower adoption of the interventional glaucoma mindset:

Continue reading...

SpyGlass Pharma completes $90 million in Series C financing

Kassi Jackson, Editor

SpyGlass Pharma announced the closing of $90 million in Series C financing. The financing will allow the company to continue its research and conduct multiple US clinical trials of its drug delivery platform.1 RA Capital Management, whose portfolio holds both private and public companies, led the financing, with support from existing and new investors including: New Enterprise Associates (NEA), Vensana Capital, Samsara BioCapital, and Vertex Ventures HC.1

Implanted during routine cataract surgery, the SpyGlass system has the potential to bridge gaps in delivering medical therapy to the unmet needs in glaucoma management and other chronic ophthalmic diseases.

Read the full story...

Association between visual functioning and death in AMD

Lynda Charters

Sophie E. Smith, BA, and colleagues from the Department of Ophthalmology, University of Colorado School of Medicine, Aurora, CO, examined a population of patients with age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and reported that better general health and ability to drive were each separately associated with a lower risk of death.1

In this observational cohort study conducted in patients from July 9, 2014, to December 31, 2021, the researchers investigated the relationship between visual functioning measured using the National Eye Institute 25-Item Visual Function Questionnaire (VFQ-25) and mortality in patients with various stages of AMD.


Is complement therapy the path forward for geographic atrophy?

Jaclyn L. Kovach, MD

Geographic atrophy (GA), an advanced form of age-related macular degeneration (AMD), is a progressive eye disease characterized by atrophic retinal lesions that develop because of loss of photoreceptors, retinal pigment epithelium (RPE), and the underlying choriocapillaris, resulting in irreversible vision loss.1

AMD is a complex and multifactorial disease, and its underlying pathophysiology has not been elucidated. However, there is increasing evidence that the dysregulation of the complement system, an important component of innate immunity, is implicated in AMD and, therefore, GA pathogenesis.2-5

Several components of the complement system have been considered attractive therapeutic targets for GA, with many investigational therapies in clinical development.3,6,7 Notably, in February 2023, the FDA approved pegcetacoplan injection (Syfovre) as the first treatment for GA, and another investigational therapy, avacincaptad pegol, is under FDA review.8,9 Both are complement-targeting therapies, which further underscores the role of complement in GA pathogenesis.

Learn more...

Severe visual loss in patients with neovascular AMD treated with anti-VEGF therapy related to central macular thickness

Lynda Charters

Italian researchers from the Eye Clinic, Azienda Ospedaliero-Universitaria Policlinico, University of Bari, Bari, Italy, reported that severe vision loss can occur often in patients with neovascular age-related macular degeneration (nAMD) between 2 consecutive intravitreal injections of anti-vascular endothelial growth factor therapy.1

While these injections are the standard treatment for this patient population, the investigators, led by Maria Oliva Grassi, MD, found a subgroup of patients who had visual loss of 15 or more Early Treatment Diabetic Retinopathy Study (ETDRS) letters between 2 consecutive intravitreal injections.

Read on...

Topical insulin drops: Successful treatment for refractory persistent corneal epithelial defects

Lynda Charters

A research team in the United Kingdom reported that topical insulin eye drops resolved refractory persistent epithelial defects (PEDs) in 9 of 11 cases in which they were tested.1 Shafi Balal, MD, was the first study author from Moorfields Eye Hospital and the UCL Institute of Ophthalmology, both in London.

The authors evaluated this treatment approach in a prospective, single-center case series from March 2020 to September 2021. The investigators explained that all patients were prescribed insulin eye drops for refractory PEDs that failed to achieve resolution of their PEDs despite receiving maximal standard medical treatment, including serum eye drops.

The insulin eye drops were instilled 4 times/day. The patients were evaluated at 2-week intervals by full slit-lamp examination and serial anterior segment photography. The primary end point was resolution of the epithelial defects.

Continue reading...

CRU 2023: Experience Napa Valley as part of an intimate eye care symposium

S. Barry Eiden, OD, FAAO, FSLS; Emily Kaiser, Assistant Managing Editor; Marlisa Miller, Editorial Intern

S. Barry Eiden, OD, FAAO, FSLS, co-chair of the CRU Eye Symposium, caught up with Optometry Times®' assistant managing editor, Emily Kaiser, to give us an overview of the meeting.

CRU is an acronym that stands for "current, relevant, useful," and the second annual symposium will be held November 10-12, 2023, at the Silverado Resort in Napa Valley, California. John D. Gelles, OD, FIAO, FCLSA, FSLS, FBCLA, and Stephanie Woo, OD, FAAO, FSLS, are also co-chairs of the meeting, with honorary ambassador Vance Thompson, MD, FACS.

Watch the interview...

Dry eye after LASIK is a common problem

Anar Maurya, OD

Since the initial days of laser in situ keratomileusis (LASIK), dry eye syndrome has been a widely known postoperative complication. Post-LASIK dry eye disease (DED) usually peaks in the first few weeks to months after surgery, and vastly improves anywhere from 6 to 12 months following surgery. Symptoms can vary from mild to debilitating. Recognition of predisposing dry eye factors, examination, and counseling help prepare patients for postoperative symptoms. This article will outline the best practices for assessing and managing post-LASIK DED to improve patient surgical outcomes and expectations.

Literature reports that, following LASIK, 95% of patients have symptoms of DED immediately, 60% have symptoms 1 month later, and 10% to 40% have symptoms that last 6 months or longer.1 With these statistics, refractive surgeons recognize that post-LASIK DED requires a significant amount of hand-holding and increased chair time, adds to patient stress, and affects visual recovery. Often, these patients fall into the laps of the optometrist, the co–managing doctor. Being well equipped and aware will benefit doctor and patient.

Read on...

Screening for diabetic retinopathy: 1 image says it all

Lynda Charters

Brazilian clinicians reported that a portable retinal camera combined with artificial intelligence (AI) demonstrated high sensitivity for screening diabetic retinopathy (DR) using only one image per eye.1 Fernando Marcondes Penha, MD, the first author of the study, is from Fundacao Universidade Regional de Blumenau and Botelho Hospital da Visão, both in Blumenau, Santa Catarina, Brazil.

In this study, investigators set out to evaluate how well an AI system works when integrated into a handheld smartphone-based retinal camera to screen patients for DR using 1 retinal image in each eye.

More here...

Meet the LEO founding board: Dr Lina T Arengo

Lina T Arango, OD; Emily Kaiser, Assistant Managing Editor; Kassi Jackson, Editor

Lina T Arango, OD, sat down with Optometry Times®' assistant managing editor Emily Kaiser to talk about her role on the founding board of Latinos en Optometry (LEO).

Founded by Diana Canto-Sims, OD, LEO has 5 goals:

  1. Increase the number of Latino students in optometry schools
  2. Provide resources and communication for Latinos in optometry
  3. Provide resources and communication for the eye care community who serve the Latino community
  4. Be a conduit between the Latino community and the eye care industry
  5. Provide CE to all optometry

Meet Dr Arengo...

Cognition Therapeutics announces dosing of first patient in MAGNIFY study of CT1812

Martin David Harp, Associate Editor, Ophthalmology Times

Cognition Therapeutics announced it has dosed the first participant in the phase 2 Magnify study of CT1812, an oral therapy for the treatment of geographic atrophy (GA) secondary to dry age-related macular edema (AMD).

According to a press release from the company,1 the MAGNIFY study is a randomized, placebo-controlled trial expected to enroll approximately 246 adults diagnosed with dry AMD with measurable GA.

The company states that CT1812 will be given orally, opposed to the typical intravitreal injection many development-stage therapies use. It will be given once daily for 24 months to determine if it can slow disease progression, measured by changes in GA lesion size.


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