Abicipar pegol for neovascular age-related macular degeneration

Rehan M. Hussain, Christina Y. Weng, Charles C. Wykoff, Raya A. Gandhi, Seenu M. Hariprasad

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


Introduction: The development of intravitreal anti-vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) therapy has revolutionized management of neovascular age-related macular degeneration (nAMD) and serves as the standard of care for treating this chronic, progressive disease. One shortcoming is the need for frequent intravitreal injections to maintain visual gains, which has led to pursuit of long-acting agents to reduce treatment burden. Areas covered: A literature search was conducted using the keywords ‘abicipar pegol’ and ‘DARPin’ on PubMed. Expert opinion: DARPin (Designed Ankyrin Repeat Proteins) molecules such as abicipar pegol offer potential therapeutic advantages over antibodies or antibody fragments, including high affinity, stability, and high molar concentration. The phase III SEQUOIA and CEDAR clinical trials suggest that abicipar allows >90% of patients to maintain stable vision with 12-week dosing intervals, comparable to results achieved with monthly ranibizumab injections. Relative to other anti-VEGF agents, intraocular inflammation has been noted in a concerning percentage of patients, which is hypothesized to be related to the manufacturing process rather than the drug itself. Modifications to reduce pro-inflammatory components resulted in reduced inflammation (8.9%) in the MAPLE study. If this high inflammation rate can be further reduced, abicipar has the potential to decrease treatment burden for nAMD patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)999-1008
Number of pages10
JournalExpert Opinion on Biological Therapy
Issue number12
StatePublished - Jul 3 2020


  • DARPin
  • Designed Ankyrin Repeat Protein
  • Neovascular age-related macular degeneration
  • abicipar pegol
  • choroidal neovascular membrane
  • vascular endothelial growth factor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Drug Discovery
  • Clinical Biochemistry


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