Intravitreal Aflibercept in Japanese Patients with Neovascular Glaucoma: The VEGA Randomized Clinical Trial

for the VEGA Investigators

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Introduction: Neovascular glaucoma is characterized by neovascularization of the iris and the anterior angle chamber. Intravitreal anti-vascular endothelial growth factor agents may improve intraocular pressure (IOP) and neovascularization. Methods: The VEGA trial assessed the efficacy and safety of intravitreal aflibercept (IVT-AFL) in patients with neovascular glaucoma in a 13-week, randomized, double-masked, sham-controlled, phase 3 study performed at multiple sites in Japan that enrolled patients with anterior segment neovascularization and IOP > 25 mmHg. Patients received background therapy plus IVT-AFL (2 mg) or sham injection at baseline. Patients were re-treated if presenting with IOP > 21 mmHg and incomplete regression of iris neovascularization, receiving additional sham or IVT-AFL injections at week 1 and IVT-AFL injections at weeks 5 and/or 9. Double-masking was maintained throughout. The primary endpoint was change in IOP from baseline to week 1. Results: Fifty-four patients were randomly assigned (full analysis set); the per-protocol set comprised 52 patients. At week 1, the least squares mean change in IOP was −9.9 mmHg for IVT-AFL versus −5.0 mmHg for sham [full analysis set: difference −4.9 mmHg (95% confidence interval −10.2 to 0.3; P = 0.06); per-protocol set: −5.5 mmHg (95% CI −10.8 to −0.2; P = 0.04)]. At week 1, a greater proportion of patients administered IVT-AFL versus sham achieved IOP ≤ 21 mmHg and had improved neovascularization grades. Patients in the sham group who met re-treatment criteria and received IVT-AFL at week 1 [n = 22 (81.5%)] had an additional mean IOP decrease of 9.2 mmHg by week 2, and the proportion with improvement in neovascularization grades increased from 11.5% to 69.2%. Increases in the proportion of patients with improved neovascularization grades and the proportion who achieved IOP control (≤ 21 mmHg) were also observed by week 2 in this group. Overall, 77.8% and 74.1% of patients treated with IVT-AFL and sham/IVT-AFL, respectively, received a single IVT-AFL injection. The most common ocular treatment-emergent adverse event was punctate keratitis (9.3%: 7.4% and 11.1% in the IVT-AFL and sham/IVT-AFL groups, respectively). Conclusions: IVT-AFL was associated with clinically meaningful improvements in IOP control, indicating that IVT-AFL may be a potential treatment option for patients with neovascular glaucoma. Trial Registration: identifier, NCT02396316.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1116-1129
Number of pages14
JournalAdvances in Therapy
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2021 Feb


  • Anti-VEGF
  • Anti-vascular endothelial growth factor
  • Intraocular pressure
  • Intravitreal aflibercept
  • NVG
  • Neovascular glaucoma
  • Neovascularization of the angle
  • Neovascularization of the iris


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