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Development of Anti-VEGF Therapies for Intraocular Use: A Guide for Clinicians

Journal of Ophthalmology
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  • Medicine


Angiogenesis is the process by which new blood vessels form from existing vessel networks. In the past three decades, significant progress has been made in our understanding of angiogenesis; progress driven in large part by the increasing realization that blood vessel growth can promote or facilitate disease. By the early 1990s, it had become clear that the recently discovered “vascular endothelial growth factor” (VEGF) was a powerful mediator of angiogenesis. As a result, several groups targeted this molecule as a potential mediator of retinal ischemia-induced neovascularization in disorders such as diabetic retinopathy and retinal vein occlusion. Around this time, it also became clear that increased intraocular VEGF production was not limited to ischemic retinal diseases but was also a feature of choroidal vascular diseases such as neovascular age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Thus, a new therapeutic era emerged, utilizing VEGF blockade for the management of chorioretinal diseases characterized by vascular hyperpermeability and/or neovascularization. In this review, we provide a guide for clinicians on the development of anti-VEGF therapies for intraocular use.

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