Advanced Cell Technology Treats Another AMD Patient

Advanced Cell Technology has announced another development as part of its study focusing on people living with the dry version of age-related macular degeneration, reported the Worcester Telegram & Gazette on August 2.

According to the article, the company has used retinal cells resulting from human embryonic stem cells (hESC) to treat yet another patient. The company explained in the article that it has, as part of its study on people living with dry AMD, performed surgery to provide its fourth patient with retinal pigment epithelial (RPE) cells. The company added that the surgery was completed at the Wills Eye Institute located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

“We are very pleased to have the second dose cohort in both of our U.S. clinical trials underway,” commented Gary Rabin, chairman and CEO of ACT, in a press release focusing on the development. “We are encouraged by our ongoing progress in all three of our clinical trials using our hESC-derived RPE cells to treat forms of macular degeneration. We have not observed any complications or side effects from the stem cell-derived RPE cells, and we will continue to monitor the patients for safety, tolerability and efficacy of this therapy.”

Meanwhile, the article noted that the fourth patient, the one who recently underwent surgery, was a member of a group that is slated to get higher cell doses than are the initial three patients. Advanced Cell Technology’s study will eventually include a dozen patients, according to the article.

According to the article, Advanced Cell Technology’s strategy includes injecting RHE cells directly into the eye so as to stop the development of AMD. AMD, an eye ailment that generally impacts those who are advanced in age, can lead to blindness. There is presently no known cure for the condition.

Previous reports have  noted that AMD will likely continue to become more common as populations continue to age and as people live longer due to medical advances. While the eye ailment tends to impact those who are elderly, older people do not need to feel as though there’s nothing they can do to avoid coming down with AMD. Maintaining a healthy diet, exercising and avoiding smoking are just some of the things people can do to reduce their odds of getting AMD.

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