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Annexon Biosciences said Wednesday that its experimental treatment for an eye disease called geographic atrophy had no effect on the growth of retinal lesions that eventually lead people with the disease to lose their vision. The result means Annexon’s drug failed to achieve the primary goal of a mid-stage clinical trial.

The company has a more optimistic view of the study results, pointing to other data showing that injections of its drug, called ANX007, preserved vision compared to sham injections. If true, this claim would be a big deal and justify a sharp increase in Annexon’s stock price. It’s also hard to believe based on the limited — some might say cherry-picked — data released Wednesday, suggesting the company is spinning a bad study outcome to mitigate a stock collapse.


Geographic atrophy is an irreversible disease of aging in which parts of the retina become damaged, forming lesions that lead to blind spots in vision that typically affect reading, driving, or night vision first, but eventually cause blindness.

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