The human eye measures approximately one inch in diameter, but traversing that blink-of-an-eye distance to achieve safe, effective and stable delivery of ophthalmology drugs via minimally or non-invasive medical devices to treat major eye diseases has taken more than 40 years to accomplish.
Is the wait for a Holy Grail product in ophthalmology medical technology soon to be over for researchers, patients and stakeholders?
Despite these decades of research, there are only four approved intraocular sustained release drug delivery products approved for use and approved globally or specific to Europe. Vitrasert® 1995 ganciclovir 4.5mg. Retisert® 2005, fluocinolone acetonide 0.59mg. Ozurdex® dexamethasone 0.7mg. Iluvien® fluocinolone acetonide 190μg.
The future for sustained-release ocular drug delivery lies in reducing the treatment burden by commercializing innovations in delivery technology, biologics delivery, targeting gene therapy to the appropriate cell types, and combining effective small-molecule therapeutics with the appropriate drug delivery system. Patient compliance will be a key ￼driver in the pursuit of ocular drug delivery; however, a demonstration of improved efficacy for a new product will practically be essential if delivering competitive advantage is to be achieved.