April 21, 2023
Medical College of Georgia (MCG) at Augusta University scientists have found a new target and drug that together appear to stop retinopathy of prematurity (ROP). In babies, the development of retinal blood vessels should be complete by birth. But with preterm birth, blood vessels can grow abnormally in a process called retinal neovascularization.
Modesto Rojas, Syed Adeel H. Zaidi and Ruth Caldwell have shown in their animal model of ROP that the small molecule K604, which is being explored in cancer and Alzheimer’s disease, can block the development of leaky, obstructive blood vessels in the retina, tamp down inflammation and enable more normal blood vessel growth, ultimately enabling better vision for the babies.