Stem Cell Therapy for Blindness

Stem Cell Therapy for Blindness

Pfizer in collaboration with University College London (UCL) has developed PF 5206388, an intraocular implant consisting of a single layer of retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) cells. It consists of a polymer framework carrying stem cells, designed to be set into the eye, according to Biotecnika on August 2, 2017.

This therapy first treated a patient in 2015, however, Pfizer has recently updated the therapy. It has abandoned four of its early-stage clinical projects, including the stem cell therapy. Pfizer derived cells from the embryonic stem cells and designed them for patients with a disorder that causes blindness.

In a clinical trial conducted by the specialists at Moorfields Eye Hospital, 10 patients were to be treated of a disease called wet age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Surgeons inserted a specially engineered patch behind the retina of the patients to deliver the stem cells. The operation was successful on all the 10 participants.

PF-06282999 was created for treating acute coronary syndrome (ACS) and belonging to the myeloperoxidase (MPO) inhibitor class, which is a group known to have potential to treat a range of illnesses such as cardiovascular, inflammatory, and neurodegenerative diseases.

Sources report that Pfizer is planning to dump another applicant treating cardiovascular illnesses – monoglyceride lipase (MGLL) inhibitor PF-06818883. The inhibitor was being developed as a treatment for intracerebral hemorrhage, and glucagon receptor blocker PF-06293620 for type 2 diabetes was also discarded. Pfizer, in its second-quarter 2017 report said that it spent around US$ 3.49 billion on R&D during the first half of the year.

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