Glaucoma Drugs in the Pipeline.

PubMed ID: 30221499

Author(s): Kaufman PL, Mohr ME, Riccomini SP, Rasmussen CA. Glaucoma drugs in the pipeline. Asia Pac J Ophthalmol (Phila). 2018 Sep-Oct;7(5):345-351. doi: 10.22608/APO.2018298. Epub 2018 Sep 17. Review. PMID 30221499

Journal: Asia Pacific Journal Of Ophthalmology (Philadelphia, Pa.), Volume 7, Issue 5, 2018

Glaucoma is a chronic disease that can be challenging to treat for both patients and physicians. Most patients will require more than 1 medication over time to maintain their intraocular pressure (IOP) at a physiologically benign level. Patients may become refractory to existing compounds and many struggle with adherence to multiple topical drop regimens. The field of glaucoma therapeutics has been advancing rapidly with an emphasis on compounds comprising multiple molecules/mechanisms of action that offer additivity and are complementary to current therapeutics. Several new topical drop compounds directly targeting the trabecular meshwork (TM)/Schlemm canal/conventional outflow pathway to reduce outflow resistance have obtained US Food and Drug Administration approval in the past year. These include rho kinase inhibitors and nitric oxide donating compounds. Alternative therapies that offer long-term IOP lowering while removing the patient from the drug delivery system are moving forward in development. These include gene therapy and stem cell strategies, which could ease or eliminate the burden of topical drop self-administration for several years. Additionally, a variety of novel formulations and devices are in development that aim for controlled, steady state delivery of therapeutics over periods of months. The future of glaucoma therapy is focusing on an increase in specificity for the individual patient: their type of glaucoma; underlying mechanisms; genetic make-up; comorbid conditions; and rate of progression. Maintaining functional vision and improving patient outcomes remains the goal in glaucoma therapeutics. The current collection of novel therapeutics offers an expanded set of tools to achieve that goal.

Copyright 2018 Asia-Pacific Academy of Ophthalmology.