About 150,000 people with glaucoma across the United States wear contact lenses—and they may soon have access to an even more effective wearable treatment option.
According to Medical Device Network, MediPrint Ophthalmics (“MediPrint”) is developing LL-BMT1—weekly contact lenses that release bimatoprost, an eye medication that reduces pressure in the eyes—for people living with glaucoma.
The company recently reported interim data from the Phase 2b SIGHT-2 clinical trial. Within the study, the researchers are working to identify the ideal LL-BMT1 dose, as well as to determine its safety and efficacy.
In the first portion of the study, the research team evaluated a low dose of LL-BMT1 compared to timolol 0.5% topical eye drops. They found that LL-BMT1 was similarly efficacious to timolol eye drops in reducing pressure in the eye. Patients reported higher levels of comfort and less eye pain.
Moving forward, MediPrint hopes to begin studying the effects of a slightly higher LL-BMT1 dose.
Glaucoma refers to a group of eye diseases characterized by progressive optic nerve damage. Normally, the optic nerve is responsible for transmitting images to the brain. It becomes damaged when high pressure builds up in the eye. This is caused by blockages that prevent the liquid in the eye from circulating, though doctors aren’t sure why the blockages occur. There are multiple types of glaucoma, including common forms (such as primary open-angle) and rare forms (such as congenital, neovascular, or pseudoexfoliation syndrome).
Symptoms do vary based on subtypes. Some common symptoms, however, may include blurry vision, “halos” appearing around lights, headache, eye pain, nausea or vomiting, and eye redness. Without treatment, this may progress to significant or full vision loss. Right now, there are a number of treatments available for glaucoma from prescription eye drops to surgery.