Investigators say that lampalizumab slowed progression of AMD in patients with advanced disease, shrinking the area of geographic atrophy by 20.4%. AMD is a leading cause of blindness and major market opportunity for the drug giant, which has executed a sequence of big advances in R&D.
After assembling a whopping $175 million financing deal this spring, Ophthotech has filed paperwork with the SEC to secure up to $85 million more in an initial public offering.
For the first time, scientists have successfully transplanted light-detecting cells in the retina, grown from embryonic stem cells, into mice--a feat that could eventually lead to new treatments for blindness in humans.
Japanese researchers have won permission to embark on a pioneering clinical study of a stem cell therapy for age-related macular degeneration, a major cause of vision loss in aging patients. The planned trial is being hailed as the first human test of a stem cell therapy made from patient's own cells.
New York-based Ophthotech has rounded up a whopping $175 million in financing to cover a pivotal late-stage study of its lead drug for wet AMD. The biotech signed a deal to share its royalties on Fovista--earlier dubbed E10030--with Novo A/S in exchange for $125 million. And Novo stepped up to lead a $50 million Series C round for the company.
The new CEO at Kala Pharmaceuticals has landed an $11.5 million A round and mapped out plans to devote much of the cash to lead programs on wet, age-related macular degeneration and ocular inflammation.
Building on a $420 million deal it already has in place with Switzerland's Molecular Partners, Allergan has come back to the bargaining table to deepen its pipeline for ophthalmic drugs. Allergan paid $62.5 million upfront and promised up to $1.4 billion dollars in milestones in the ambitious deal, which covers a pair of R&D pacts.
Pfizer ($PFE) has had a busy day, signing separate pacts with two biotech companies: one with Lpath for a product candidate to treat ophthalmology disorders, and the other with Australia's Phylogica
> Shares of Acorda Therapeutics shot up after researchers released new late-stage data demonstrating that Fampridine consistently improved the walking speeds of MS patients.
Shares of QLT rocketed up 55 percent in a tense market yesterday after the biotech finished a lengthy task in persuading the FDA that a blood test should not be required before doctors prescribe its