PATIENTS AND CAREGIVERS This site is intended for US healthcare professionals.
Find a specialist

ABOUT LUXTURNA®Mechanism of action

LUXTURNA is a gene augmentation therapy that uses an AAV2 viral vector to deliver the human RPE65 cDNA into the RPE cells and induces them to produce a functional RPE65 enzyme.1

Targeting vision loss at its core2

LUXTURNA introduces a functional copy of the RPE65 gene to compensate for the RPE65 mutation.2-4

Mechanism of action overview

LUXTURNA is administered via subretinal injection following a vitrectomy.2

Click on each step or next arrow to view content
1RPE65 gene delivery
2RPE65 protein production
3Restoring the visual cycle
1RPE65 gene delivery

RPE65 gene delivery

RPE65 gene delivery

LUXTURNA uses the adeno-associated viral vector serotype 2 (AAV2) to carry a functional copy of the RPE65 gene into the retinal pigment epithelial (RPE) cells to compensate for the RPE65 mutation.2-4

Illustration of the RPE65 gene delivery method
2RPE65 protein production

RPE65 protein production

RPE65 protein production

With a functioning RPE65 gene, the cells begin producing the RPE65 protein.2,5

RPE65 Protein ProductionRPE65 Protein Production
3Restoring the visual cycle

Restoring the visual cycle

Restoring the visual cycle

With the functional RPE65 protein, 11-cis-retinal (a critical visual pigment component) regenerates to restore the visual cycle.2,6

Restoring the visual cycleRestoring the visual cycle
Illustration of the RPE65 protein production cycle

The AAV2 vector

AAV2 is used in the delivery of LUXTURNA. AAV2 efficiently transduces RPE cells, has a low potential to elicit an inflammatory response, and is nonpathogenic.7,8

Using gene augmentation therapy, LUXTURNA works to restore the visual cycle2,9

Stay informed by registering for updates

Graphic Screen icon
  • Get the latest news on LUXTURNA®
  • See the latest LUXTURNA efficacy data
  • Hear about new patient stories and resources


Warnings and Precautions

  • Endophthalmitis may occur following any intraocular surgical procedure or injection. Use proper aseptic injection technique when administering LUXTURNA, and monitor for and advise patients to report any signs or symptoms of infection or inflammation to permit early treatment of any infection.
  • Permanent decline in visual acuity may occur following subretinal injection of LUXTURNA. Monitor patients for visual disturbances.
  • Retinal abnormalities may occur during or following the subretinal injection of LUXTURNA, including macular holes, foveal thinning, loss of foveal function, foveal dehiscence, chorioretinal atrophy, and retinal hemorrhage. Monitor and manage these retinal abnormalities appropriately. Do not administer LUXTURNA in the immediate vicinity of the fovea. Retinal abnormalities may occur during or following vitrectomy, including retinal tears, epiretinal membrane, or retinal detachment. Monitor patients during and following the injection to permit early treatment of these retinal abnormalities. Advise patients to report any signs or symptoms of retinal tears and/or detachment without delay.
  • Increased intraocular pressure may occur after subretinal injection of LUXTURNA. Monitor and manage intraocular pressure appropriately.
  • Expansion of intraocular air bubbles Instruct patients to avoid air travel, travel to high elevations or scuba diving until the air bubble formed following administration of LUXTURNA has completely dissipated from the eye. It may take one week or more following injection for the air bubble to dissipate. A change in altitude while the air bubble is still present can result in irreversible vision loss. Verify the dissipation of the air bubble through ophthalmic examination.
  • Cataract Subretinal injection of LUXTURNA, especially vitrectomy surgery, is associated with an increased incidence of cataract development and/or progression.

Adverse Reactions

  • In clinical studies, ocular adverse reactions occurred in 66% of study participants (57% of injected eyes), and may have been related to LUXTURNA, the subretinal injection procedure, the concomitant use of corticosteroids, or a combination of these procedures and products.
  • The most common adverse reactions (incidence ≥5% of study participants) were conjunctival hyperemia (22%), cataract (20%), increased intraocular pressure (15%), retinal tear (10%), dellen (thinning of the corneal stroma) (7%), macular hole (7%), subretinal deposits (7%), eye inflammation (5%), eye irritation (5%), eye pain (5%), and maculopathy (wrinkling on the surface of the macula) (5%).


Immune reactions and extra-ocular exposure to LUXTURNA in clinical studies were mild. No clinically significant cytotoxic T-cell response to either AAV2 or RPE65 has been observed. In clinical studies, the interval between the subretinal injections into the two eyes ranged from 7 to 14 days and 1.7 to 4.6 years. Study participants received systemic corticosteroids before and after subretinal injection of LUXTURNA to each eye, which may have decreased the potential immune reaction to either AAV2 or RPE65.

Pediatric Use

Treatment with LUXTURNA is not recommended for patients younger than 12 months of age, because the retinal cells are still undergoing cell proliferation, and LUXTURNA would potentially be diluted or lost during the cell proliferation. The safety and efficacy of LUXTURNA have been established in pediatric patients. There were no significant differences in safety between the different age subgroups.

Please see the US Full Prescribing Information for LUXTURNA.


LUXTURNA (voretigene neparvovec-rzyl) is an adeno-associated virus vector-based gene therapy indicated for the treatment of patients with confirmed biallelic RPE65 mutation-associated retinal dystrophy.

Patients must have viable retinal cells as determined by the treating physicians.


1. Maguire AM, Russell S, Chung DC, et al. Durability of voretigene neparvovec for biallelic RPE65-mediated inherited retinal disease: phase 3 results at 3 and 4 years. Ophthalmology. 2021;128(10):1460-1468. doi:10.1016/j.ophtha.2021.03.031. 2. LUXTURNA [package insert]. Philadelphia, PA: Spark Therapeutics, Inc; 2022. 3. Gupta PR, Huckfeldt RM. Gene therapy for inherited retinal degenerations: initial successes and future challenges. J Neural Eng. 2017;14(5):051002. doi:10.1088/1741-2552/aa7a27. 4. Kay C. Gene therapy: the new frontier for inherited retinal disease. Retina Specialist. March 2017:35-42. Accessed January 21, 2022. 5. Polinski NK, Gombash SE, Manfredsson FP, et al. Recombinant adeno-associated virus 2/5-mediated gene transfer is reduced in the aged rat midbrain. Neurobiol Aging. 2015;36(2):1110-1120. doi:10.1016/j.neurobiolaging.2014.07.047. 6. Moore T. Restoring retinal function in a mouse model of hereditary blindness. PLoS Med. 2005;2(11):e399. doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.0020399. 7. Thomas CE, Ehrhardt A, Kay MA. Progress and problems with the use of viral vectors for gene therapy. Nat Rev Genet. 2003;4(5):346-358. doi:10.1038/nrg1066. 8. Trapani I, Puppo A, Auricchio A. Vector platforms for gene therapy of inherited retinopathies. Prog Retin Eye Res. 2014;43:108-128. doi:10.1016/j.preteyeres.2014.08.001. 9. Russell S, Bennett J, Wellman JA, et al. Efficacy and safety of voretigene neparvovec (AAV2-hRPE65v2) in patients with RPE65-mediated inherited retinal dystrophy: a randomised, controlled, open-label, phase 3 trial. Lancet. 2017;390(10097):849-860. doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(17)31868-8.