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Past Events

OTSS Webinar—General Considerations of Using Non-Human Primate in Non-Clinical Ocular Drug Research

Webinar Recording | Presentation Slides

Date and Time: Wednesday, April 24, 2024 | 2 hours

Hosted by: The SOT Ocular Toxicology Specialty Section

Eric (Wankun) Xie, MD, PhD, Director of Ophthalmology, JOINN Laboratories

Webinar Description:
Non-human primate (NHP) is widely used in the non-clinical research of ocular drugs due to its unique anatomy and physiology. In this webinar, we will discuss the basic biology of the NHP eye compared to human and other species (rabbit and rodents) in anatomy and physiology, as well as the advantages and concerns of using the NHP eye in preclinical ocular research and drug discovery. We will share major background findings in ocular toxicity studies in different types of test articles (biologics and gene therapy) in different species. The origin and principle of immunogenicity in preclinical ocular studies will be discussed, along with representative images of ocular immunogenicity findings, and experience in risk mitigation strategies. We will introduce NHP ocular disease models, and present examples of using these models for efficacy studies with different routes of administration. We will also discuss the ophthalmic endpoints for ocular efficacy and toxicity studies, and present typical ocular findings related to the immune and test articles. Additionally, we will briefly discuss the differences in toxicological study practices in the US and China. Lastly, we will summarize our ocular study capabilities and experience at both sites, including efficacy and toxicology studies.

OTSS Webinar—iPSC-Derived Retinal Pigment Epithelium Replacement Therapy for Macular Degeneration: From Bench to Bedside

Webinar Recording | Presentation Slides

Date and Time: Tuesday, January 16, 2024 | 90 minutes

Arvydas Maminishkis, PhD, MD, Director of Translational Research, CORE,
The Ophthalmic Genetics and Visual Function Branch (OGVFB) at The National Eye Institute (NEI),
National Institutes of Health (NIH)

Webinar Description:
Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) can provide autologous and allogeneic replacement tissues, potentially all degenerative diseases. Autologous tissues have the advantage of not requiring immune-suppressive drugs that are known for their side-effects. However, feasibility of autologous iPSC-based therapies hasn’t been established. Here, we developed an autologous iPSC-based therapy for age-related macular degeneration (AMD), a blinding eye disease that affects over thirty million people worldwide. AMD is caused by the progressive degeneration of retinal pigment epithelium (RPE), a monolayer tissue that maintains photoreceptor function and survival. Combining developmental biology with tissue engineering, we developed clinical-grade iPSC-derived RPE-patch on a biodegradable scaffold. This patch performs key RPE functions like photoreceptor phagocytosis, water transport, and polarized cytokine secretion. We confirmed the safety of this patch in an immune-compromised rat model and confirmed its efficacy in a swine RPE injury model. A phase I/IIa Investigational New Drug (IND)-application for iPSC-derived ocular tissue to treat AMD was recently cleared by the US FDA. This Phase I/IIa clinical trial will test safety, feasibility, and integration of an autologous iPSC-derived RPE-patch in twelve advanced AMD patients. This work is helping leverage other similar autologous cell therapies in various other degenerative diseases.

OTSS Webinar—Regulatory Requirements for Ocular Biologics Development

Webinar Recording | Presentation Slides

Maria Rivera, PhD, Pharmacologist/Toxicologist, US FDA

Date and Time: Thursday, March 10, 2022 | 90 minutes

Coordinated global efforts over the last several decades have resulted in the development and adoption of alternatives to traditional animal tests for dermal hypersensitivity assessment. Following the adverse outcome pathway (AOP) framework, several new approach methodologies (NAMs) mapped to key molecular and cellular events in the AOP have been validated and combined to yield “defined approaches”, which were shown to provide superior performance to the existing animal tests when compared to human data for hazard and potency categorization. However, regulatory and industry needs extend beyond classification to deriving points of departure that will facilitate quantitative risk assessment. Next Generation Risk Assessment (NGRA) is an exposure-led, hypothesis-driven approach which integrates NAMs. This hypothetical skin allergy risk assessment case study of two consumer product exposures - 0.1% coumarin in a face cream and 1% coumarin in a deodorant – demonstrates the application of a skin allergy NGRA framework which incorporates the Skin Allergy Risk Assessment (SARA) Model. The SARA Model is a Bayesian approach which allows prediction of a human relevant point of departure (PoD) (the HRIPT dose with a 1% chance of sensitisation or ED01 [µg cm-2]) based upon any combination of HRIPT, LLNA, DPRA, KeratinoSens, h-CLAT or U-SENS data. Through incorporation of benchmark exposure information, the SARA Model can be used to calculate a risk metric for a consumer relevant exposure. This case study demonstrates how integrating a computational model and NAM data in a weight of evidence can build confidence in robust decision making.


Lighting in the Vivarium—The Spectrum and Intensity Is Crucial, The Source Is Not

Webinar Recording | Presentation Slides

Date and Time: February 23, 2022 | 60 minutes

The use of light-emitting diodes (LED) for vivarium lighting and in other laboratory spaces has come to the fore in the last several years, primarily driven by cost considerations, lower energy costs, and lessened environmental impact. However, as with any new technology, concerns have been raised about the light emitted from these devices, and confusion has arisen regarding the safety of their use in these environments. The purpose of this presentation is to present some fundamental information on lighting systems, the current safe lighting recommendations for vivariums, dispel the concerns for the use of LED for vivariums and provide anyone responsible for lighting to design the best systems for their vivariums or retrofit current facilities with this technology.

OTSS Reception Meeting

Presentation Slides

Date and Time: March 15, 2021 | 85 minutes

  • This virtual meeting is open for ALL SOT meeting registrants
  • We will share OTSS updates and announce award winners
  • We also have a virtual social networking opportunity to connect with fellow ocular toxicologists at the end of the reception

Nonclinical Safety Toxicology Strategies for the Development of Novel Ocular Biotherapeutics

Date and Time: March 17, 2021 | 90 minutes

  • Toxicokinetic modeling approaches to informing dose selection for intravitreal biotherapeutics. Seung-Wook Chung, Boehringer Ingelheim
  • Ocular inflammation in nonclinical intravitreal toxicity studies with biologics: types, timing and translatability. Helen Booler, Roche
  • Development of KSI-301, An Ultra High Molecular Weight Phosphorylcholine Biopolymer Antibody Conjugate for Treatment of Retinal Diseases by Intravitreal Administration. John Sinclair, Kodiak Sciences
  • Preclinical pearls for successful gene therapy development, Past and Future. Daniel Chung
  • Nonclinical Toxicology Strategies for Development of Novel Ocular Biotherapeutics. Theresa Chen, FDA

OTSS/MDCPSS Virtual Career Panel—SOT Mentoring Event

Webinar Recording | Presentation Slides

Date and Time: Monday, September 21, 2020 | 90 minutes

The Ocular Toxicology Specialty Section (OTSS) and the Medical Device and Combination Product Specialty Section (MDCPSS) are holding a virtual career panel as a mentoring event for SOT members interested in career development within the ocular and medical device toxicology fields. The panel will consist of professionals at early, middle, and late stages of their career from Academia, Government, Industry, and Consulting. The panelists will introduce themselves, provide a brief overview of how they arrived at their current position, and address questions from the event moderators. Then the Q&A session will be opened to the audience to engage the panel on career advice, strategy, and goal setting. Please join MDCPSS for our upcoming virtual career panel.


Academia Government Industry Consulting
Mindy Reynolds
Washington College
Ron Brown
Risk Science Consortium
Hiromi Hosako
Joel Cohen
Gradient Corp.
Neera Tewari-Singh
Michigan State Univ.
Alan Hood
James Kleinedler
Boston Scientific
Andrea Rodrigues
Tox Strategies
  Elissa Wong
Bob Przygoda*
Johnson & Johnson
William Wustenberg
Mycroft Medical LLC
    Ed Reverdy
Johnson & Johnson