San Francisco, California August 25, 2010 FibroGen, Inc., today announced results of a 2-year clinical study demonstrating that surgical implantation of biosynthetic corneas formulated with the company's proprietary recombinant human type III collagen (rhCIII) restored vision and promoted nerve regeneration (restoring sensitivity) in patients who had corneal damage and significant vision loss. The results of this phase 1, investigator-sponsored study were published today in Science Translational Medicine.1
Corneal damage and disease are major causes of blindness worldwide. In countries where tissue banking is available, such as the US, treatment is by implantation of human donor corneas. However, there is a severe shortage of human donor tissue worldwide. Patients who do receive donor human corneas, however, can still suffer complications, such as tissue rejection. Corneal prostheses, made from synthetic plastics are used in limited cases, but only where human donor grafts are contraindicated or have been repeatedly unsuccessful. These synthetic alternatives are not designed to replace donor tissues or promote tissue regeneration.
FibroGen pioneered the development of recombinant collagen production technology and is the only producer of rhCIII. Since 2005, FibroGen has collaborated with Dr. May Griffith of Linkping University, senior author of today's publication, to develop biosynthetic corneas molded from chemically cross-linked rhCIII. The biosynthetic implants are designed to mimic the human cornea, which is composed mainly of the protein collagen.
"Recombinant human collagen is a viable replacement for naturally occurring human collagen that does not have the limitations of human donor tissue or animal-sourced collagens, such as risk of disease transmission and availability of donor supply," said Dr. Griffith. "Our study provides proof-of-concept that corneal implants composed of recombinant human collagen can pro
|Contact: Laura Hansen|