Purpose: Topical corticosteroids used to treat ocular inflammation are associated with a high risk of clinically significant toxicities. Therefore, corticosteroid-sparing medications to treat ocular inflammation are needed. Noninfectious anterior uveitis (NAU) is a sight-threatening ocular inflammatory condition typically treated with topical corticosteroids. This corticosteroid-controlled comparator trial examines the safety and efficacy of reproxalap, a novel inhibitor of reactive aldehyde species (RASP), for the treatment of ocular inflammation, by using NAU as a model. Methods: Forty-five patients with mild-to-moderate acute NAU were randomly assigned 1:1:1 to receive reproxalap 0.5% ophthalmic solution (4 times daily for 6 weeks), prednisolone 1% ophthalmic solution (Pred Forte®, 4 times daily taper for 6 weeks), or a combination of reproxalap 0.5% ophthalmic solution (4 times daily for 6 weeks) and prednisolone 1% ophthalmic solution (twice daily taper for 6 weeks). Results: All treatments improved anterior cell count and grade, and no differences were observed in change from baseline between groups. Reproxalap monotherapy and combination therapy were statistically noninferior to prednisolone. The proportion of patients requiring rescue therapy was comparable across treatment groups. No safety issues were identified for reproxalap-treated patients, whereas treatment with prednisolone resulted in an average increase of intraocular pressure of ∼2 mm Hg. Conclusions: Reproxalap may be a safe and effective alternative to topical corticosteroids for patients with NAU and other forms of ocular inflammation. These results represent initial clinical evidence of the importance of RASP in ocular inflammation and the applicability of RASP inhibition to immune modulation in ocular disease. Clinical trial (NCT02406209).
Keywords: anti-inflammatory; clinical studies; eye drops; inflammation; reactive aldehyde species; reproxalap; uveitis.