Aerie Pharmaceuticals to Acquire Avizorex Pharma to Advance Its Dry Eye Program

By Staff
Wednesday, November 20, 2019 12:24 AM DURHAM, N.C.—Aerie Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:AERI) announced the signing of an agreement to acquire Avizorex Pharma (AVX), a Spanish ophthalmic pharmaceutical company developing therapeutics for the treatment of dry eye disease. “This acquisition bolsters our pipeline with a clinical-stage dry eye product candidate, and we are excited to expand our footprint in ophthalmology. This product has a novel mechanism-of-action for treating dry eye and we believe that, if approved, it could nicely complement the currently approved drugs for this indication. Since the majority of our efforts in 2020 will be focused on supportive non-clinical studies, we do not currently expect to meaningfully increase our R&D expenditures next year,” said Vicente Anido, Jr., PhD, chairman and chief executive officer at Aerie.

Study Shows Eye Damage Linked to Vitamin B3 Can Be Reversed

By Staff
Wednesday, November 20, 2019 12:15 AM
NEW YORK, N.Y.—In a first-of-its-kind clinical report, retina specialists at the New York Eye and Ear Infirmary of Mount Sinai (NYEE) have shown that severe vision loss from a self-prescribed high dose of over-the-counter niacin is linked to injury of a specific cell type in a patient’s eye. The experts report that discontinuing the vitamin led to reversal of the condition and have published their findings in the fall issue of Journal of VitreoRetinal Diseases. Niacin, also known as vitamin B3, is used for lowering hyperlipidemia or cholesterol and comes in prescription and over-the-counter forms; it can produce a rare toxic reaction called niacin-induced cystoid maculopathy, a form of retinal swelling.

CooperVision Says ‘Breakthrough’ MiSight 1 Day Lens for Childhood Myopia Set for March 2020 U.S. Launch

By Staff
Tuesday, November 19, 2019 12:24 AM
SAN RAMON, Calif.—CooperVision announced today that its innovative MiSight 1 day contact lens will launch in the U.S. early next year as part of a CooperVision myopia management initiative. The initiative is scheduled to begin in March. The MiSight lens received Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval on Friday (Nov. 15), as VMAIL reported, and will be the cornerstone of a comprehensive myopia management approach to be offered by CooperVision, according to the company’s announcement.

EyeQue Earns 2020 CES Innovation Award for DIY Vision Monitoring Kit

By Staff
Monday, November 18, 2019 12:21 AM NEWARK, Calif.—EyeQue, a supplier of vision wellness devices, has been honored with a CES 2020 Innovation Award for its EyeQue Vision Monitoring Kit, a convenient, low-cost eye wellness system designed for everyone from children to adults. EyeQue will feature the system at CES 2020, the mega technology exhibition which will take place in Las Vegas from January 7-10, 2020. This is the company’s third CES Innovation Award in the last four years and its second in the category of “Tech for a Better World.”

Researchers Discover Potential Mechanism That May Lead to Treatments for Glaucoma, Other Diseases

By Staff
Monday, November 18, 2019 12:18 AM TUCSON, Ariz.—Scientists in the University of Arizona Department of Physiology have identified a potential molecular mechanism that may hold the key to understanding how pressure is regulated in the eye. Funded by a $2.3 million five-year grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) National Eye Institute, this research could help to develop future treatments for glaucoma and other diseases. Current treatments focus on lowering eye pressure with eyedrops and oral medications. However, these drugs lose their effectiveness over time. More than three million Americans suffer from glaucoma, the second-leading cause of blindness in the U.S., according to Prevent Blindness America.

MacuLogix Names Christine Silverberg as Director of National Accounts

By Staff
Friday, November 15, 2019 12:21 AM HARRISBURG, Pa.—MacuLogix Inc., a company that equips eyecare professionals with instruments, tools and education to effectively diagnose and treat patients with age-related macular degeneration (AMD), appointed Christine Silverberg, MBA, BSN, RN, as director of national accounts. In this role, Silverberg will lead business development and partnerships across the industry to make “dark adaptation” testing more readily available to consumers across the U.S., according to an announcement earlier this week. “Christine brings a depth and breadth of experience calling on the C-Suites of major independent delivery networks and accountable care organizations in the U.S.,” president and chief executive officer William McPhee said in the announcement. “Her knowledge of population health, business operations and data analytics to execute successful programs in corporate settings will be invaluable in supporting our mission.”

American Diabetes Association, VSP Vision Care Promote Public Health Initiative

By Staff
Thursday, November 14, 2019 12:24 AM
ARLINGTON, Va.—The American Diabetes Association (ADA) today announced a new collaboration with VSP Vision Care, a VSP Global company to focus on eye disease, an often overlooked but costly and devastating complication of diabetes. The initiative will focus on the crucial role annual comprehensive eye exams play in the early detection, intervention and prevention of eye disease and vision loss caused by diabetes, the two organizations said in a joint statement. “Diabetic eye disease is one of the complications of diabetes, affecting a third or more of people with diabetes over age 40,” said Tracey D. Brown, CEO of the American Diabetes Association. “Fortunately, we can effectively manage and even prevent diabetic eye disease with early detection and treatment. With VSP, we are positioned to make this happen. Preventing these complications is key!”

American Optometric Association Releases Second Edition of Diabetes Clinical Practice Guideline

By Staff
Wednesday, November 13, 2019 12:18 AM ST. LOUIS—Citing the significant public and economic burden posed by diabetes in the United States, the American Optometric Association (AOA) has issued its revised, evidence-based clinical practice guideline on the disease for doctors of optometry and other health professionals who deliver care to patients with diabetes. The AOA's “Evidence-Based Clinical Practice Guideline: Eye Care of the Patient with Diabetes Mellitus, Second Edition” recommends 31 actions doctors of optometry can take to enhance the care they provide to patients with diabetes. The guideline represented two years of revision by the AOA's Evidence-Based Optometry (EBO) Committee, using a systematic and rigorous clinical review process. The previous evidence-based AOA guideline on diabetes was published in 2012, according to an announcement this week.

Ocular Therapeutix Announces Strategic Update and Operational Restructuring

By Staff
Tuesday, November 12, 2019 12:21 AM BEDFORD, Mass.—Ocular Therapeutix Inc. (NASDAQ: OCUL), a biopharmaceutical company focused on developing and commercializing innovative therapies for diseases and conditions of the eye, announced an operational restructuring plan. Upon its completion, the plan is expected to result in an estimated $11 million in annualized savings through personnel reductions and approximately $14 million in one-time program deferrals. The company estimates that it will record costs associated with the restructuring of approximately $0.7 million in the fourth quarter, according to its announcement.

Modern Workplace (Rx) Eye Safety

By VM Staff
Monday, November 11, 2019 12:45 AM NEW YORK—Did you know that more than 2,000 people injure their eyes at work every day? And of these injuries, an estimated 10 percent to 20 percent will cause temporary or permanent vision loss, Prevent Blindness points out. The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) believes that the right eye protection can lessen the severity of those injuries and even prevent 90 percent of them.

Specialized Optometry

By By Marge Axelrad, Andrew Karp, Mark Tosh and Brian Dunleavy
Monday, November 11, 2019 12:30 AM NEW YORK—We are living in an age of specialization. Today we can get virtually anything we want from a business whose only business is delivering a certain type of product or service, whether it’s a vegan restaurant or Victoria’s Secret. Optometry, like many medical professions, is being reshaped by the specialization trend. Modern living has changed the way we use our eyes, and many optometrists, particularly those in private practice, have responded by developing specialties to address specific patient needs. Some specialties, such as pediatrics and low vision, have been long established in optometry, while others, like dry eye management and neuro-optometry are more recent additions. Yet all seem to be benefitting from the advent of new technologies and treatment methods which are bringing exciting changes to vision care.

Adding a Touch of Specialization to a General Practice

By Staff
Monday, November 11, 2019 12:29 AM Although many optometrists prefer to not to specialize and instead orient themselves toward family practice, some still incorporate elements of specialization into their practice. A good example is Timothy D. Fries, OD, MBA, who owns and operates three locations in rural areas in Central Ohio. “It’s tough to specialize in that type of market, we do “a little bit of everything,” he explained. “We see patients as young as six months and as old as 104, as well as everyone in between.”

ODs Can Employ Social Media Content and SEO to Leverage Specialty Expertise

By By Zvi Pardes,, Contributing Editor
Monday, November 11, 2019 12:28 AM EyeCarePro, which works with optometric practices on their web and digital presence, started ODSpecialty because we were working with clients who more and more weren’t being served by our general marketing format. They were less interested in general care patient growth and had specific medical services they wanted to make a larger part of their practices. There was nothing out there to make this happen for them, and it took a specialized content approach to make it happen.

‘THE Myopia Meeting’ Set for Dec. 8 in Northern California

By Staff
Thursday, November 7, 2019 12:15 AM NEW YORK—Five speakers have been named and the agenda set for the upcoming myopia management event, THE Myopia Meeting, which is scheduled for Dec. 8 in Burlingame, Calif., outside of San Francisco, according to the event organizers. The meeting marks the first event under the auspices of the partnership between Review of Myopia Management (RMM) and Treehouse Eyes.

New Harris Poll ECP and Parent Survey Shows the Significant Need for Myopia Education, CooperVision Says

By Staff
Wednesday, November 6, 2019 12:27 AM SAN RAMON, Calif.—One in four children in the U.S. is myopic, but according to The Harris Poll survey results released yesterday by CooperVision, only 33 percent of parents know what that term means, or how it can affect their children’s future eyesight. This corroborates the finding that 97 percent of ECPs agree parents should know more about the ways they can help protect children’s vision. The survey was conducted among U.S. eyecare professionals (ECPs), including optometrists and ophthalmologists, and more than 1,000 U.S. parents with children between 8 to15 years old regarding their knowledge of myopia.