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Ocular safety profile and intraocular pharmacokinetics of an antagonist of EphB4/EphrinB2 signalling
  1. Manpreet Brar1,
  2. Lingyun Cheng1,
  3. Ritchie Yuson1,
  4. Francesca Mojana1,
  5. William R Freeman1,
  6. Parkash S Gill2
  1. 1Jacobs Retina Center at Shiley Eye Center, University of California, San Diego, California, USA
  2. 2Vasgene Therapeutics, Los Angeles, California, USA
  1. Correspondence to Professor Lingyun Cheng, Department of Ophthalmology, Joan and Irwin Jacobs Retina Center at Shiley Eye Center, University of California, 9415 Campus Point Drive, La Jolla, CA 92037-0946, USA; cheng{at}


Aims To characterise the ocular safety profile of sEphB4 and its pharmacokinetics in rabbit eyes.

Methods 15 rabbits with single intravitreal injection of sEphB4 in the right eye (1000 μg, 465 μg, 160 μg or 80 μg) and phosphate-buffered saline in the left eye were studied at different time points by monitoring inflammatory changes, intraocular pressure, electroretinogram and histological changes. The dose of 80 μg/eye was injected intravitreally into 21 rabbits, and the fellow eyes were used as controls for sEphB4 ocular pharmacokinetics. sEphB4 concentrations were measured in the vitreous, retina, choroids and plasma using ELISA at the designated time points.

Results The study showed that there was no evidence of intraocular toxicity at any time point with any dose tested. No statistically significant differences were seen in the intraocular pressure, scotopic and photopic ERGs, and histopathology between the control and sEphB4 injected eyes. A pharmacokinetic study demonstrated a vitreous half-life of 4.1 days and 6.3 days in the retina. The mean residence time of the drug was 10.45 days in the retina and 7.95 days in the choroid.

Conclusion It seems that sEphB4 at the concentrations studied did not appear to be toxic to rabbit eyes and may be a longer-acting treatment option to the current therapies for ocular abnormal neovascularisation.

  • EphB4/EphrinB2 signalling
  • ocular pharmacokinetics
  • intravitreal drug delivery
  • ocular drug safety
  • vitreous
  • choroid
  • retina
  • drugs
  • pharmacology

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  • Funding National Institutes of Health (NIH) Grant No EY007366 and EY 018589; Unrestricted Research Fund to the UCSD Jacobs Retina Center.

  • Competing interests None.

  • Patient consent Obtained.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.