Ocular Hypertension and Glaucoma

Ocular Hypertension is defined as elevated intraocular pressure (IOP) without ocular damage and is associated with an increased risk of progression to Glaucoma.1,2 Nearly 7 million adults over the age of 40 in the US are estimated to suffer from Ocular Hypertension. 1,3

Glaucoma is a chronic progressive disease characterized by elevated IOP with progressive optic nerve damage, retinal nerve fiber layer defects and visual field loss. 90% of Glaucoma cases are classified as Open-Angle Glaucoma based on a normal angle between the iris and cornea.4 Nearly 3 million adults in the US suffer from Open-Angle Glaucoma and is the leading cause of blindness.1,3,5 Nearly 50% of Glaucoma patients go undiagnosed since the disease is asymptomatic in the early stages.6 The damage caused by Glaucoma cannot be reversed, but treatment can slow or prevent vision loss.

Treatment Challenges

Although eye drops are the first line therapy, correct patient administration is difficult and the ability to do so worsens with age, comorbidities, and disease progression. Eye drops also cause side effects including redness of the white of the eye (hyperemia) and eye surface changes. As a result, poor adherence and compliance is a commonly cited reason for treatment failure with rates of 30-50% causing persistence of Glaucoma in up to 64% of cases.7

There is a need for a safe biodegradable, sustained-release treatment that effectively reduces IOP, is well tolerated by patients and provides a constant drug dose with a predictable degradation profile. 

  1. Friedman DS et al, Ophthalmol, 2004, 122:532-538
  2. Gordon MO et al, Arch Ophthalmol, 2002, 12: 714-720
  3. https://www.brightfocus.org/glaucoma/article/ocular-hypertension-and-glaucoma
  4. https://www.glaucoma.org/glaucoma/types-of-glaucoma.php
  5. Resnikoff S et al, Bull World Health Organ, 2004;82:844-851
  6. Center for Disease Control and Prevention/National Center for Health Statistics, 2010 & 1995
  7. NEI, Report of the Glaucoma Panel, Fall 1998
Postoperative bacterial endophthalmitis

Postoperative bacterial endophthalmitis is a rare but devastating complication that can occur following ocular surgery.1 Without proper intervention, endophthalmitis can cause irreversible damage to structures within the retina resulting in a loss of vision.2 This inflammatory condition affecting the intraocular cavities is typically caused by a bacterial or fungal infection, with the most common causative agents including coagulase-negative staphylococci, Staphylococcus aureus, streptococci and other Gram-positive cocci.3,4

Treatment Challenges

Patients are often prescribed topical prophylaxis such as antibiotic, steroids and NSAID drops as part of post-surgical care. Surgeons also treat patients with intracameral injections of antibiotics; however, these are not approved for the treatment of endophthalmitis and are only used off-label.The success of topical therapies is inconsistent due to poor compliance with dosing or drop competence, particularly in elderly patients with comorbidities.

There is a need for a safe biodegradable solution that effectively prevents and treats ocular infections following cataract surgery, is well tolerated by patients, and provides a constant drug dose with a predictable degradation profile. 

  1. Friling et al J Cataract Refract Surg (2013) 39 pp 15-21
  2. Kernt M et al, Clin Ophthalmol (2010) 4 121-135
  3. Kunimoto et al Am J Ophthalmol (1999) 218 pp 240-243
  4. Durand, M.L. Clinical Microbiology & Infection (2013)19(3) pp 227-234
  5. Braga-Mela M.D. et al, J Cataract Refract Surg (2014) 40(12) pp 2134-2142