Ellex Medical Lasers Limited announced that it will partner with a panel of leading ophthalmologists to host a roundtable on age-related macular degeneration (AMD) on Friday, October 26, during the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) meeting in Chicago.
“Our goal is to start a serious discussion about the importance of treating this disease at an earlier stage in order to reduce its significant, negative impact on patient quality of life, and to reduce the burden its places on the global healthcare sector,” Tom Spurling, CEO of Ellex, said in a company news release.
Ophthalmologists participating in the panel are Frank Holz, chairman and professor, Department of Ophthalmology, University of Bonn, Germany; Robyn Guymer, Head of Macular Research and Deputy Director at the Centre for Eye Research Australia (CERA), Australia and professor of ophthalmology at Melbourne University, Australia; and Netan Choudhry, founder and medical director of Vitreous Retina Macula Specialists of Toronto.
Current treatment options for AMD are limited to expensive and invasive anti-VEGF injections, which are suitable for the late stage of the disease only. In contrast, Ellex’s Retinal Rejuvenation Therapy (Ellex 2RT) offers the potential to slow the rate of progression of macular degeneration in its early stages.
Together with Prof. Guymer, Ellex recently announced the results of LEAD, a 3-year randomized, multicenter clinical trial which investigated the efficacy of Ellex 2RT in intermediate AMD patients (iAMD). Post hoc analyses showed intervention with Ellex 2RT in patients who did not have coexistent reticular pseudodrusen (RPD) at the commencement of the trial (76% of patients enrolled) resulted in a significant 77% reduction in the rate of progression from iAMD to late AMD versus placebo (P=0.002).
“Ellex has prioritized investment into comprehensive clinical investigations to develop 2RT as an intervention for AMD in its early stages, before patients have progressed to the late stage disease. With Ellex 2RT, we have the potential to intervene at the level of the underlying pathology,” added Mr. Spurling.
Where other laser therapies have failed in their attempts to treat AMD, 2RTrepresents the first time a laser intervention has successfully addressed AMD disease progression in over 20 years of AMD laser research.
“From the LEAD trial, we see that using Ellex 2RT as an intervention during early AMD can delay the onset of late stage AMD. This isn’t a cure but we hope that this will change the lives of millions of AMD patients worldwide,” said Mr. Spurling.