Repurposing of Activated Protein C for AMD

  • Category: Pharma
  • Investment Status: Advanced
  • Medical Field: Ophthalmology
  • Patent Status: PCT
  • Development Status: In vitro and in vivo POCs completed
  • Medical Center: Belinson Medical Center
  • Inventors: Prof Dov Weinberger and Dr Tami Livnat

Background: Choroidal neovascularization (CNV) is the leading cause of severe vision loss in various ocular diseases such as age-related macular degeneration (AMD), angioid streaks and high myopia. A rupture of Bruch’s membrane which is followed by a damage to the blood retinal barrier (BRB) induces CNV formation and progression.

Technology: Activated protein C (APC), a plasma serine protease with systemic anticoagulant, anti-inflammatory and antiapoptotic activity, was found to reduce cell permeability in RPE cells and to a significant reduction in CNV area compared to the treatment of choice, bevacizumab. This project offers an innovative approach that may lead to the development of novel therapeutic strategies targeting CNV.

Market: Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a progressive eye condition caused by the gradual deterioration of the macula, which is the area of the retina responsible for central vision. AMD is the most common cause of significant irreversible vision loss among the elderly in developed countries. According to a meta-analysis of studies conducted between 1970–2013, the global prevalence of AMD was reported to be 8.69% among adults ages 45–85 years, but the country-specific prevalence can be as high as 30–40%. In addition to the high prevalence of the condition, AMD is also associated with severe disability and has a major impact on the quality of life and emotional well-being of an affected individual. It is estimated that the AMD market was worth $2,199 million in 2013; GlobalData expects the market to grow to $3,766 million by 2023.