Researchers in Dublin have identified a part of the immune system involved in the development of Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD), which when controlled could halt progression of the condition. They found that controlling the level of “inflammasome” IL18, progression of AMD from the dry to the wet form can be prevented. IL18 apprears to have an anti-angiogenic factor, which prevents the formation of new blood vessels, the problem in Wet AMD.
If the levels of IL18 could be controlled, or even augmented, in the retinas of patients with Dry AMD, the researchers reckon that it could prevent progression to the Wet type, “leading to an exciting new prospect for a novel therapy for AMD”.
The full article is available in the journal Nature Medicine.
As ever, research continues.