Liverpool University Hospitals trial new sight saving drug for people with diabetic eye disease

Liverpool University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (LUHFT) has trialled a new drug which could help save the eyesight of ‘millions of people’ with diabetic eye disease, the trust says.

The drug, known as faricimab, was trialled at the trust’s Clinical Eye Research Centre (CERC) as part of an international study into the treatment of diabetic macular oedema – the most common cause of sight loss in diabetic people.

According to the trust, the results of the trial show that faricimab helped maintain vision – extending time between treatments – and if approved for use, patients will be able to reduce their need for injections from every four to eight weeks to three times a year.

Professor John Brennan, Interim Medical Director at Liverpool University Hospitals, said: “The outcomes of this trial for patients with diabetic macular oedema are extremely encouraging, not only for our patients but for people around the world. I would like to thank Professor Pearce and his colleagues at the CERC for their continued commitment to developing these new treatments, many of which ultimately go on to have a positive impact on the care we are able to provide our patients.” 

Professor Ian Pearce, Director of the CERC and Consultant Ophthalmologist, Liverpool University Hospitals, who was the Principal Investigator of the trial, commented: “Attending many different diabetic clinic appointments each year is hugely time-consuming for people with diabetes. Reducing the need to attend so many clinic appointments will be a great help to these patients. 

“This study shows that faricimab has the potential to reduce the burden of treatment for our patients, whilst maintaining excellent treatment outcomes and preventing sight loss. 

“I would like to thank all our patients who agreed to be involved in this trial. The Clinical Eye Research Centre is fully committed to gaining access to cutting edge treatment for the people of Merseyside and beyond by participating in these global clinical studies.”