AGN-745 (Sirna-027) - Wet AMD Development was halted
Allergan has halted development of its siRNA-based wet age-related macular degeneration, Sirna-027 is the first chemically modified short interfering RNA (siRNA) targeting Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor Receptor-1 (VEGFR-1).
VEGFR-1 is found primarily on vascular endothelial cells and is stimulated by both VEGF and placental growth factor (PlGF), resulting in the growth of new blood vessels(11).
By targeting VEGFR-1, Sirna-027 is designed to reduce pathologic angiogenesis mediated by both VEGF and PlGF.
Development was halted for AGN-745 after the drug failed to meet a key efficacy endpoint in a phase II study.
The trial compared the effect of three different monthly doses of AGN-745 with Genentech’s antibody drug Lucentis®, the standard of care for AMD, in treating the subfoveal choroidal neovascularization associated with the disease.
Both drugs were administered via intravitreal injection(12).
Apparently no safety issues were associated with AGN-745, a chemically modified siRNA.
But since the drug did “not meet its efficacy hurdle” — improvement in visual acuity — Allergan opted to halt its development(13).