EyeWorld Weekly Update, September 29, 2017

September 29, 2017
Volume 23 , Number 34

Licensing agreement commenced for cetirizine ophthalmic solution

An exclusive licensing agreement has been entered between Nicox (Sophia Antipolis, France) and Eyevance Pharmaceuticals (Fort Worth, Texas) for commercialization rights for cetirizine ophthalmic solution 0.24% (Zerviate) in the U.S. Zerviate is the first topical formulation of the antihistamine cetirizine that is approved for ocular itch associated with allergic conjunctivitis.

Two glaucoma drugs will be developed by pSivida and pharmaceutical partner company

pSivida (Watertown, Massachusetts) has signed an agreement with a large pharmaceutical company to develop two glaucoma drugs that will use pSivida's proprietary sustained release technology, according to a company press release. The agreement builds on positive results for up to 6 months of use of pSivida's technology.

FDA accepts investigational NDA for dry eye disease therapeutic agent

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has accepted an investigational NDA for brimonidine/steroid combination therapy (OCU310, Ocugen, Malvern, Pennsylvania), a topical formula to treat dry eye. Ocugen also announced that the first patient has been dosed in its proof-of-concept study, a randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind, multicenter trial.

NICE recommends Eylea for myopic choroidal neovascularization

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) in the U.K. has issued a recommendation for the use of Eylea (aflibercept, Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Tarrytown, New York/Bayer, Leverkusen, Germany) to treat myopic choroidal neovascularization (CNV), according to a press release from Bayer. The recommendation is based on results from the Phase 3 MYRROR study, during which patients with myopic CNV received one initial intravitreal aflibercept injection. Patients were retreated only if they had persisting CNV or a recurrence. During the 48-week observation period, clinically meaningful visual improvements of +13.5 letters were met and sustained. Fifty percent of aflibercept patients gained 15 or more letters from baseline. Patients in the intravitreal aflibercept group had a median of two injections during the first 8 weeks of the study and a median of zero injections at weeks 12 to 44. Aflibercept is already licensed in the U.K. for various treatments, such as wet age-related macular degeneration.


  • Preoperative cornea higher order aberrations (HOAs) were associated with visual improvement in treating corneal scar caused by herpes simplex keratitis, according to a study from Eisuke Shimizu and co-researchers. They analyzed corneal HOAs and visual impairment that occurred after corneal transplantation for the treatment of corneal scars caused by herpes simplex keratitis. The study included 52 eyes (18 normal subjects and 34 consecutive eyes of patients with corneal scarring from herpes simplex keratitis and subsequent corneal transplantation). The logMAR visual acuity improved from 1.40 to 0.46 after corneal transplantation. Visual acuity after corneal transplantation also was correlated with corneal HOAs at 12 months. There was a positive correlation with visual improvement at 3, 6, and 12 months with preoperative HOAs of the total cornea and posterior surface. Researchers recommend preoperative assessment of corneal HOAs, particularly in the posterior surface, to be part of the decision to perform corneal transplantation in eyes with herpes simplex keratitis. The study appears in the American Journal of Ophthalmology.
  • High astigmatism and a transepithelial photorefractive keratectomy (PRK) were associated with increased myopic PRK retreatment rates, according to a study led by Russell Pokroy, MD. However, the retreatment incidence for PRK continues to decrease. The retrospective cohort study included 9,699 eyes of 9,699 patients with a mean age of 25.9 years and a mean preoperative subjective spherical equivalent of -4.30 D. There were 223 retreated eyes (2.3%). The 2-year retreatment rate went down from 6.17% for PRK performed in 2005 to 0.10% for primary PRK performed in 2012. Factors that increased the odds of retreatment included transepithelial PRK, astigmatism equal to or higher than 3.5 D, and surgeon factors. Other factors included an age older than 40, low preoperative sphere, and a maximum ablation depth less than 45 microns. The study is published in the Journal of Cataract & Refractive Surgery.
  • The risk for corneal ulcer increases when a patient has end-stage renal disease, according to a retrospective, nationwide, matched cohort study with 92,967 patients recruited between 2000 and 2009 from the Taiwan National Health Insurance Research Database. Of the 660 patients with end-stage rental disease and 591 controls with a corneal ulcer, the corneal ulcer incidence was 1.54 times higher in patients with renal disease than that in control patients. After researchers adjusted for potential confounders such as diabetes mellitus and HIV, patients with end-stage renal disease were 1.17 times more like to have a corneal ulcer. The incidence of corneal ulcer was notably higher among patients with diabetes mellitus. The researchers recommend regular ocular exams in patients with end-stage renal disease. The research, led by RL Jan, appears in the British Journal of Ophthalmology.
  • In a meta-analysis of short eyes and IOL power calculation formulas, the Haigis was superior compared with the Hoffer Q, SRK/T, and SRK II in predicting IOL power. Researchers, led by Qiwei Wang, conducted a comprehensive search in various online databases of studies that focused on patients with an axial length of less than 22 mm. The between-group difference of the mean absolute error was evaluated with a weighted mean difference and 95% confidence intervals. Ten observational studies with 1,161 eyes were included. The Haigis, Holladay 2, Hoffer Q, Holladay 1, SRK/T, and SRK II formulas were included. The Holladay 2 introduced the smallest overall mean absolute error. The mean absolute error difference was statistically different between the Haigis and Hoffer Q, Haigis and SRK/T, and Haigis and SRK II. The study is published in Clinical & Experimental Ophthalmology.
  • The Barrett formulas are now part of the Pentacam AXL IOL Calculator (Oculus, Arlington, Washington). The calculator's update includes the Barrett Universal II, Barrett Toric, and Barrett True K. A free software update with the new formulas is available for all Pentacam AXL users, according to a company press release.

This issue of EyeWorld Weekly Update was edited by Amy Goldenberg and Vanessa Caceres.

EyeWorld Weekly Update (ISSN 1089-0319), a digital publication of the American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery and the American Society of Ophthalmic Administrators, is published every Friday, distributed by email, and posted live on Friday.

Medical Editors: Eric Donnenfeld, MD, chief medical editor; Rosa Braga-Mele, MD, cataract editor; Clara Chan, MD, cornea editor; Nathan Radcliffe, MD, glaucoma editor; and Vance Thompson, MD, refractive editor.

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