Early Eye Intervention
UK researchers are testing out a sleep mask that may slow the advancement of diabetic retinopathy. The Noctura 400 mask emits a low-level green light, mimicking the effects of daylight, according to a report in Mail Online (UK). If successful in trials, such a treatment would be used for those beginning to show signs of diabetic retinopathy in eye exams. The device slows blood vessel growth for the wearer. While such growth is normally a good thing for the eyes, new small blood vessels can swell and cause damage in the eyes of those suffering from diabetic retinopathy.
The Eyes Have it
The FDA has approved a new drug treatment for diabetic macular edema, the most common cause of vision loss for those with diabetic retinopathy. The new drug, Iluvien, is a steroid implanted in the eye that works for up to three years. Studies have shown it can be effective to combat a build-up of fluid and protein in the macula, the part of the eye responsible for vision. Not everyone can use steroids for edema, however, as the treatment can sometimes put pressure on the eye or cause cataracts, according to a Fierce Biotech report. The drug had previouslybeen rejected by the FDA three times.
Sanofi and Afrezza: A Dynamic Duo?
As soon as Afrezza was approved by the FDA, the next hurdle was how to make the inhalable insulin device economically viable. Mannkind, the makers of Afrezza, successfully courted Sanofi to invest in the product, garnering a promise of up to nearly $1 billion in potential investment. Now, the two companies may have hatched upon a business plan to make their partnership work: Sanofi will attempt to get its insulin approved for use with the Afrezza inhaler, according to a FiercePharma report. If this works, Sanofi can then sell the insulin to Afrezza for cost, thus improving the chances for Afrezza to be profitable.
Lower Neuropathy Relief
In a new study, an implantable device that stimulates the spinal cord proved effective in reducing pain for people who suffered from painful diabetic peripheral neuropathy. Researchers at two pain centers tracked 34 patients for half a year; 20 people were given conventional treatment and an implant that would stimulate the spinal cord, while 14 patients were given only conventional treatment. Of those patients with the implant, 59% reported reductions in pain levels, according to a report in Diabetes in Control. Diabetic peripheral neuropathy is a condition that causes pain or loss of feeling in hands and feet.
New Insulin Succeeds with Kids
Novo Nordisk announces that its new long-acting insulin, Tresiba, met all goals in pediatric trials. In a 52-week study, the drug proved effective in providing good blood glucose control for up to 40 hours, and it met safety goals. The news helps buoy Novo’s chances of getting FDA approval for Tresiba in the second half of 2015, according to FierceBiotech.
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