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New drug in development shown to be effective in treating AMD

Patients who suffer from the wet form of age-related macular degeneration have encouraging news from Roche, the manufacturer of lampalizumab. Phase II study results show that the drug slowed the progression of macular degeneration. Researchers noted a 20.4% reduction in the geographic atrophy of patients after being treated on a monthly basis. Roche conducted a Phase II study of lampalizumab and found that the geographic atrophy progression rate was decreased by 44% over a period of 18  months. In addition, no unexpected side effects were noted. The drug works by blocking the cell-destruction properties of a particular protein known as Factor D. This protein is thought to increase the chances of developing age-related macular degeneration. Researchers are encouraged by the results of this study and are also looking into finding methods of identifying biomarkers which would indicate which people would be good candidates for being treated with lampalizumab.*

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