Uveitis is inflammation of the uveal tract of the eye, i.e. the iris, ciliary body and choroid. It is classified according to the part of the uveal tract that it affects and symptoms also vary according to this. Uveitis can be acute, chronic or relapsing. Uveitis is not as common as DME, but is still counted as the third largest cause for blindness in the US.
Uveitis is classified according to the part of the uveal tract that the inflammation affects. Anterior uveitis is the most common type of uveitis, affecting the iris and/or ciliary body. Intermediate uveitis is the term for inflammation which affects the middle part of the uveal tract or eye, including the vitreous humour and oftek causing cystoid macular edema, CME. Posterior uveitis affects the choroid and retina.
Anterior uveitis is mainly treated with corticosteroid eye drops that generally provide good results, reducing inflammation. Available treatments for intermediate and posterior uveitis are oral corticosteroids with extensive systemic side effects or surgically implanted steroids.
Oculis’ most advanced product candidate is dexamethasone cyclodextrin nanoparticle eye drops, DexNP, in two indications; diabetic macular edema (DME) and uveitis. By introducing DexNP to the uveitis market, Oculis intends to add to the current treatment alternatives, a drug that is a preferred treatment option for intermediate and posterior uveitis. It is a simpler treatment alternative compared to injected corticosteroids and with considerably less systemic side effects compared to oral corticosteroids.
Oculis has already completed a pilot study demonstrating the efficacy of DexNP in intermediate and posterior uveitis with CME. Anecdotal cases with anterior uveitis have also shown good response with DexNP.