Clearside picks up $7.9M for microneedle blindness treatment; Ampio embarks on clinical trials for oral diabetic treatment;

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> Clearside Biomedical has raised $7.9 million to finance a microneedle to deliver drugs to the back of the eye for the treatment of retinal blindness, and the startup could raise as much as $8.5 million more before beginning clinical testing in the first quarter of this year, if all goes as planned. Story

> Ampio Pharmaceuticals ($AMPE) began a clinical trial of Optina, its oral version of a drug to treat diabetic macular edema--previous treatments all required an injection directly into the eye. Release

> Intersect ENT received $30 million in Series D funding for its quarter-sized implants to treat chronic sinusitis. The device releases a steroid drug to keep the sinus open and attracted attention from Medtronic ($MDT). Story

> Cumberland Pharmaceuticals and Sandor Medicaids signed a commercialization agreement for an injectable ibuprofen drug in India, marking the first time in the country that the drug is available in such a form. Release

> Results from a Phase III study showed that once-daily, inhaled tiotropium from Boehringer Ingelheim improved lung function in asthma patients who have allergies that affect their reactions to other treatments. Release