TORONTO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Arctic Diagnostics (ArcticDx) is pleased to announce that its product Vita Risk has been approved for reimbursement by the United States Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Palmetto Molecular Diagnostic Services Program (MolDX) (LCD 37035).
“Vita Risk is a genetics-based adjunct to treatment for age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Patients with dry AMD are commonly treated with eye vitamins and supplements to prevent advanced disease and vision loss. Based on personal genetics, some patients derive no benefit and may even be harmed by this treatment, while others benefit greatly,” said Greg Hines, president and CEO of ArcticDx. “Vita Risk determines which eye vitamin formulation an individual should take to maximize benefit and avoid needless progression to blindness.”
“We are proud to discover the important link between genetics and patient response to very commonly administered nutritional eye supplements,” said Dr. Brent Zanke, chairman and chief medical officer of ArcticDx. “After a thorough medical and scientific review, and broad professional consultation, the medical necessity of Vita Risk has been recognized and now reimbursed, facilitating its integration into clinical practice.”
Vita Risk will be an important adjunct treatment for the over 10 million people in North America who have dry AMD.
Vita Risk is available in Canada, the United States and the rest of the world through Arctic Medical Laboratories in Grand Rapids, Michigan, a facility certified under the US Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments and by the College of American Pathologists.
ArcticDx is a privately owned Canadian molecular genetics company focused on products for age-related macular degeneration and Alzheimer’s disease (www.arcticdx.com). It was founded in 2004 with Genome Canada funding and subsequent investment from the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research, Ontario Genomics and private investors. ArcticDx is based at MaRS Discovery District in Toronto, Ontario.
Age-related macular degeneration affects over 10 million individuals and is the leading cause of acquired blindness in North America. Inherited genetics is the major cause of disease risk. Affected patients experience the loss of central vision, impairing most activities of daily living.
About eye vitamins
The only treatment known to slow the progression of earlier forms of AMD to advanced disease are pharmacologic doses of antioxidant vitamins and zinc sold in many popular over-the-counter brands. The usefulness of this daily treatment was proven by the US National Eye Institute in 2001 in the Age-Related Eye Disease Study with an update reported in 2013. Over three million people in North America take such vitamins and will benefit from Vita Risk.
About MaRS Discovery District
MaRS Discovery District (@MaRSDD) in Toronto is one of the world’s largest urban innovation hubs. Our purpose is to help innovators change the world. MaRS supports promising ventures tackling key challenges in the health, cleantech, finance and commerce, and work and learning sectors, as they start, grow and scale. In addition, the MaRS community fosters cross-disciplinary collaboration to drive breakthrough discoveries and new solutions to be adopted in Canada and beyond, growing our economy and delivering societal impact at scale.