Nanoscope Therapeutics Launches Phase 2b Clinical Trial for Optogenetic Therapy
While the trial is for people with RP, the company hopes it will also benefit people with other retinal degenerative diseases
Nanoscope Therapeutics, a clinical-stage biotechnology company, has launched a Phase 2b clinical trial for its optogenetic therapy for people with advanced retinitis pigmentosa (RP) and potentially other retinal conditions. The study will enroll 27 participants with RP at multiple sites across the U.S. The company plans to complete enrollment by the end of 2021.
The treatment, MCO-010, is designed for people who have lost most or all of their photoreceptors, the cells that make vision possible. The treatment, a small drop of liquid delivered by an intravitreal injection, uses a human-engineered virus to deliver copies of the Multi-Characteristic Opsin (MCO) gene to bipolar cells — cells that don’t normally sense light but often survive after photoreceptors are lost to advanced retinal disease.
The company says that MCO-010 will enable the recipient’s bipolar cells to sense ambient light, thereby working as a backup system for lost photoreceptors. The approach doesn’t use goggles or eyewear to enhance the visual information coming into the retinas.