Washington : The drug, Ranibizumab, has the potential to prevent blindness and visual impairment from age-related macular degeneration in non-Hispanic Caucasian patients, according to a computer-modeling study carried out by scientists at the Wilmer Eye Institute.
Neil M. Bressler, M.D., of Wilmer Eye Institute, The Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, and colleagues designed a modeling study using outcomes from three previous phase 3 ranibizumab trials.
After gathering and analyzing data from the Beaver Dam Eye Study, as well as the US Census Bureau (2008), they predicted that 151,340 non-Hispanic Caucasian Americans would develop neovascular AMD in 2008.
The computer model predicted that if none of the 104,582 patients received monthly ranibizumab, 16 percent (16,268) of them would have become legally blind within 24 months.
Monthly ranibizumab was estimated to reduce legal blindness in 24 months to 4,484 (by 72 percent).
Based on results of the model designed for this study, the authors conclude that ranibizumab would have a significant effect on blindness rates among patients with AMD.
The study has been published in the Archives of Ophthalmology, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.