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Anti-growth factor drugs raise hope and concern for treatment of children's eye diseases
Date:8/3/2009

ldren. Because of the urgent need for treatment of serious but relatively rare eye diseases in children, "off-label" use of drugsfor purposes other than those which the drugs are approvedis common in pediatric ophthalmology.

A study is being performed to compare the two anti-VEGF antibodies in adults with AMD. Because ranibizumab stays in the body for a shorter time than bevacizumab, it might be a better choice for use in treating eye diseases. However, the upcoming study may not be large enough to detect small differences in side effects, and in any case the results may not be applicable to children.

Meanwhile, Dr. Avery urges pediatric ophthalmologists using anti-VEGF antibodies to watch carefully for any possible side effects in their young patients. "Bevacizumab and ranibizumab have provided us with a great opportunity to improve the treatment of a variety of retinal diseases," he concludes. "Hopefully, the dramatic improvements in outcomes we have seen in adults will extend into pediatric diseases, but further study is clearly needed to assess the safety and efficacy of these drugs in this population."


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Contact: Jayne Dawkins
ja.dawkins@elsevier.com
215-239-3674
Elsevier
Source:Eurekalert

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