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AMD drug needs less injections, but causes greater inflammation

Allergan’s age-related macular degeneration (AMD) drug abicipar has demonstrated comparable efficacy to Lucentis (ranibizumab) with fewer injections, but also generated a higher incidence of intraocular inflammations.

The results, taken from the Phase III clinical trials for the eight and 12-week (SEQUOIA and CEDAR) anti-VEGF abicipar regimens, met the pre-specified primary endpoint of non-inferiority to ranibizumab.

According to Allergan, during the first year of the study abicipar showed similar efficacy after 6–8 injections as 13 injections of ranibizumab, with similar overall adverse events among the three treatment arms.

The results, however, also revealed a higher incidence of intraocular inflammation at 15.1% and 15.4% of patients in the abicipar eight and 12-week, treatment arms compared to 0.6% in the ranibizumab treatment.

The company indicated that the findings meant abicipar would be strongly considered for a second year of clinical trials.

“In both studies, abicipar demonstrated remarkable efficacy in the eight-week and 12-week regimens,” Allergan chief research and development officer Dr David Nicholson said.

“We have generated important findings in these trials to address a serious unmet need. We will continue to review these data, including inflammation findings, and are working on further optimising the abicipar formulation.”

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