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Cherng-Ru Hsu, Yi-Hsun Chen, Chih-Peng Liu, Chih-Hung Chen, Kuo-Kuei Huang, Jui-Wen Huang, Meng-Nan Lin, Chih-Lung Lin, Wan-Ru Chen, Yi-Ling Hsu, Tze-chung Lee, Shuen-Hsiang Chou, Chia-Mu Tu, Chrong-Shiong Hwang, Yu Chuan Huang, Da-Wen Lu; A Highly Selective Rho-Kinase Inhibitor (ITRI-E-212) Potentially Treats Glaucoma Upon Topical Administration With Low Incidence of Ocular Hyperemia. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2019;60(2):624-633. doi: https://doi.org/10.1167/iovs.18-25252.
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The purpose of this study was to investigate the IOP-lowering effects of the ITRI-E-212, a new Rho-associated protein kinase (ROCK) inhibitor. ITRI-E-212 improved fluid outflow through the trabecular meshwork and reduced IOP with transient and mild conjunctival hyperemia. ITRI-E-212 can potentially be developed into new antiglaucoma agents.
ITRI-E-212 was selected from more than 200 amino-isoquinoline structures because of its adequate solubility and drug-loading percentage in eye drops. ITRI-E-212 has less than 50% inhibitory concentration (IC50) against ROCK2. The in vitro kinase inhibition was evaluated using the ADP-Glo kinase assay. A comprehensive analysis of the kinase inhibitor selectivity of ITRI-E-212 was performed using the KINOMEscan methodology. The IOP-lowering effect and tolerability of ITRI-E-212 were investigated in normotensive and ocular hypertensive rabbits. The pharmacokinetics study was performed in vivo in the aqueous humor (AH), and hyperemia was assessed.
ITRI-E-212 showed high in vitro inhibitory activity against ROCK2 and high specificity against AGC kinases. The mean IOP-lowering effect of ITRI-E-212 in normotensive and ocular hypertensive models was 24.9% and 28.6%, respectively; 1% ITRI-E-212 produced notable reductions in IOP that were sustained for at least 6 hours after each dose once per day. Only transient, mild hyperemia was observed. The compound extracted from the AH reached 78.4% ROCK2 kinase inhibition at 1 hour after dose administration and was sustained for 4 hours.
ITRI-E-212 is a novel and highly specific ROCK2 inhibitor with the ability to lower IOP in animal models. It has favorable pharmacokinetic and ocular tolerability profiles with only minimal conjunctival hyperemia.
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