A Phase 2 iLink Program for Keratoconus Has Begun

Without treatment, an estimated 20% of those with progressive keratoconus may eventually require corneal transplantation. Glaukos, a company creating novel therapies for chronic eye diseases, developed the iLink corneal cross-linking procedure to help preserve vision and slow keratoconus progression. On March 14, 2022, Glaukos announced via news release that it had launched a Phase 2 clinical program, consisting of two clinical trials, to evaluate the 3rd-generation iLink treatment.

About Keratoconus

Keratoconus is a relatively rare vision disorder characterized by a thinning cornea. Normally, the cornea, or the clear outer lens of the eye, is dome-shaped. But in keratoconus, the thinning of the cornea causes it to bulge into a conical shape. While doctors are not sure what causes keratoconus, many believe that genetic and environmental factors could play a role. This condition is also more common in individuals with Leber congenital amaurosis, Down syndrome, and Marfan syndrome. Additional risk factors include a family history of keratoconus, frequent eye-rubbing (possibly due to inflammation or itching), being Black or Latino, or being younger in age. Keratoconus typically manifests between the ages of 10-30, and may progress for an additional 10-20 years. While this condition typically affects both eyes, it may progress differently in each eye. Symptoms include:

  • Blurred vision
  • Increased sensitivity to light
  • Worsening or clouded vision with a sudden onset
  • Eye irritation
  • Headaches due to eye pain
  • A need for frequent changes in eyeglass prescriptions
  • Difficulty seeing at night
  • Halos around bright lights

Learn more about keratoconus.

iLink Corneal Cross-Linking

According to Glaukos, the iLink procedure is the first FDA-approved procedure of its kind. Glaukos has been developing this therapy to optimize patient outcomes. Its first iLink treatment was the iLink Epi-off, with the second being the iLink Epi-on. Now, the corneal cross-linking procedure represents the third generation of Glaukos’ technology.

The procedure consists of the KXL System, which provides UV light and bio-activates the Photrexa or Photrexa Viscous ophthalmic solutions. During the procedure, the UV light helps to stabilize the cornea.

Within these upcoming Phase 2 clinical trials, researchers will analyze the safety, efficacy, and tolerability of the newest generation of iLink. The trial will enroll patients on a global scale. During the trial, researchers will also determine the efficacy of custom vs. non-custom therapeutic patterns.

To learn more about the prior studies performed on iLink, take a look at this clinical data.

Jessica Lynn

Jessica Lynn

Jessica Lynn has an educational background in writing and marketing. She firmly believes in the power of writing in amplifying voices, and looks forward to doing so for the rare disease community.

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