ZURICH (Reuters) -Swiss drugmaker Novartis mentioned on Tuesday it has purchased gene remedy specialist Arctos Medical for an undisclosed quantity, aiming to spice up its efforts to seek out remedies for extreme imaginative and prescient loss.
Arctos’s know-how is a possible option to deal with inherited retinal dystrophies (IRDs) and different illnesses that contain photoreceptor loss, akin to age-related macular degeneration (AMD).
Present gene remedy remedies goal to appropriate a particular gene, so solely a small variety of sufferers can profit, Novartis mentioned. The Arctos know-how shouldn’t be restricted to a particular gene, and may doubtlessly deal with many types of IRDs, it mentioned.
IRDs have an effect on greater than 2 million individuals globally and sometimes lead to full blindness. AMD, in the meantime, impacts an estimated 170 million individuals globally, Novartis mentioned.
The acquisition underscores its dedication to utilizing optogenetics-based therapies to revive imaginative and prescient to sufferers with superior blindness, the corporate mentioned.
“Optogenetics is rising as a promising therapeutic strategy that may restore sight to sufferers who’re legally blind,” Jay Bradner, president of the Novartis Institutes for BioMedical Analysis, mentioned in a press release.
(Reporting by John Revill; Enhancing by Christopher Cushing and Devika Syamnath)