B&L, Alcon Settle Lawsuit
Bausch & Lomb and Alcon Laboratories, Inc., settled a lawsuit that was filed by B&L claiming some of Alcon's promotional material made false and misleading claims about ReNu MultiPlus multi-purpose contact lens solution and other contact lens care solutions.
In light of the agreement, the lawsuit filed in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of New York has been dismissed with prejudice, without any payment of damages from either party.
The lawsuit centered on Alcon's use of a color-coded chart showing differences in superficial punctate transient corneal staining profiles observed in Dr. Gary Andrasko's research. In a statement by both companies after the agreement, Alcon said it would change the red-yellow color scheme used in its promotional materials to address the concerns expressed by B&L.
The joint statement further elaborated that the use of the color scheme in Alcon's materials was not intended to communicate that the lens-solution combinations designated red or yellow meant danger or caution, and was not meant to suggest an increased risk of corneal infection. There are several factors that may contribute to the risk of corneal infection, and Alcon and B&L that there is no clinical evidence that the differences in corneal staining observed by Dr. Andrasko increase the risk of infection.
|FDA Approves Boston XO2|
|The FDA has cleared the use of the new Bausch & Lomb Boston XO2 GP contact lens material for daily wear in patients who have ametropia and certain irregular corneal conditions. The material features a hyper-Dk value of 141, versus Boston XO's ISO/Fatt Dk value of 100.|
WaveTouch Technologies Certifies Marco Aberrometer
■ WaveTouch Technologies recently completed certification of the Marco 3D Wave Analyzer to aid in the production of its individualized WaveTouch soft contact lenses.
WaveTouch soft contact lenses are manufactured from patient information gathered from in-office aberrometry readings that measure both lower- (defocus and astigmatism) and higher- (spherical aberration, coma trefoil, etc.) order aberrations.
Vincent S. Zuccaro, OD, FAAO, WaveTouch Technologies chairman, said he was "delighted" about the certification. "As such, U.S. practitioners owning a Marco 3D Wave will be among the first that will be able to dispense WaveTouch contact lenses when they are rolled out into the marketplace later this year," he said.
|■ SynergEyes, Inc. has appointed Garold Edwards, OD, FAAO, as vice president of Clinical Affairs. In this role he will work to define all clinical study parameters, deliverables and protocols and provide expertise to practitioners working with SynergEyes lenses. He will also coordinate and lead clinical research and development projects and serve as the primary scientific expert of SynergEyes products.|
■ The AOA Paraoptometric Section has made available a new education module for paraoptometric professionals called "Soft Contact Lens Wear and Care." It's available free of charge to all Paraoptometric Section Members at www.aoa.org.
■ The board of Cooper Companies, Inc. has elected Robert S. Weiss as its chief executive, succeeding A. Thomas Bender who will retire Nov. 1. Weiss is currently the company's executive vice president and chief operating officer and has been with CooperVision for 30 years.
■ Advanced Medical Optics has appointed Richard J. DeRiso to vice president, global regulatory affairs, where he will oversee the development and execution of worldwide regulatory strategies for the company's new and existing products.
■ Lens Dynamics, Inc. has moved to a new location. The company's phone, fax and e-mail information remain same, but as of Oct. 1 the new mailing address is 4090 Youngfield Street, Wheat Ridge, Colo. 80033.
■ Optometry Giving Sight has named Dr. Moes Nasser of Houston, Texas, as the winner of a $2,000 travel grant, which will fund his participation in a Volunteer Project Team trip to Africa in 2008. As part of the Volunteer Project Team, Dr. Nasser will travel to one of OGS's funded projects and be part of the team that delivers eye care and training to the local population.
■ Bausch & Lomb has won honors from Hispanic Business magazine and Latina Style magazine for its commitment to diversity and workplace inclusion, recognized as one of 60 best companies for Hispanic employees and receiving an honorable mention for providing the best career opportunities for Hispanics and Latinas, respectively.
■ Alimera Sciences has entered into an exclusive worldwide agreement with Emory University to explore oxidative stress management — specifically the reduction of reactive oxygen species (ROS) — as a treatment option for ophthalmic diseases. Alimera would be responsible for both the development and commercialization of the compounds, and Emory will receive milestone payments and royalties from net sales.
■ In addition to its AchieveVision Program for Olympic athletes and hopefuls, The Vision Care Institute is donating to the United States Olympic Committee several pieces of vision equipment to help athletes optimize their vision.
■ The 35th EFCLIN Congress and Exhibition will take place later this month from Oct. 11 to 13 in Málaga, Spain. Details about the meeting are available at www.efclin.com.
CLAO Meeting, Grant Winners
The Contact Lens Association of Ophthalmologists (CLAO) held its annual meeting this month at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas from Oct. 5 to 6. The meeting immediately followed the CLAO Education and Research Foundation (CLAO ERF) Scientific Symposium, which took place Oct. 4 to 5. Highlights included major international symposia presented by the Japan Contact Lens Society, the European Contact Lens Society of Ophthalmologists and the Brazil Society of Cornea and Contact Lenses. In addition, Elizabeth Cohen, MD, presented the Oliver H. Dabezies, Jr. Lectureship, titled "Keratoconus: Diagnosis and Management," and Raymond M. Stein, MD, presented the Harold A. Stein Lectureship, titled "Innovations in Refractive Surgery."
CLAO ERF also recently announced its 2007 Scientific Grant Recipients:
- Loretta Szczotka-Flynn, OD, MS, University Hospitals Case Medical Center, Cleveland, Ohio, research title: "Role of Bacterial Biofilms in Infiltrative Keratitis."
- Danielle M. Robertson, OD, UT Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, Texas, research title: "CTL/IGFBP3 Regulation of Corneal Epithelial Apoptosis."
- Amanda Ackerman, University of California, Berkeley, research title: "Exploring Corneal Epithelial Barriers to Bacterial Infection."
|LONGTIME CL VETERAN TO RETIRE|
|A 48-year veteran of the contact lens industry recently announced his retirement. Carl Moore will step down as president of ABB♦CON-CISE, ending a highly honored career. Moore will continue on as a significant shareholder in the company.|
Moore was involved with design, manufacturing and distribution of contact lenses since the 1960s with hard contact lenses that could only be worn for short periods of time to the extended wear and bifocal lenses of today. He was president of the Contact Lens Manufacturer's Association, board member of the Contact Lens Society of America and was a founding member of the Contact Lens Council. Moore also received Honored Fellow Status in the Contact Lens Society of America and was a Fellow of the National Academy of Opticians. He was honored with The Dr. Josef Dallos and the Leonardo Da Vinci awards, which signify major contributions to the industry and mankind. In addition to his role at Con-Cise, he was also President of Primary Eyecare Network (PEN), a practice management group for independent optometrists.
"I am looking forward to retirement and enjoying my outside interests; racing cars, traveling, golf and spending time with my family," says Moore. "I know the Company is in good hands and will continue to grow into the future."
The American Optometric Association's (AOA) Paraoptometric Section has released results of a Practice Efficiencies survey conducted in January to determine optometrists' understanding of the role of paraoptometrics in the practice and the scope and function for which staff are currently responsible. The AOA also wanted to explore what assistance would be most helpful to optometrists in the training of their staff. The survey was provided through an education grant from Vistakon and sent to a random sampling of 4,000 optometrists, 712 of whom responded.
Some findings included:
- The average number of total personnel per office in 2006 was 7.8, performing a variety of duties.
- 44 percent said at least some staff were certified, on average employing 2.9 certified staff members.
- 92 percent provided in-office training; 98 percent provided on-the-job training and 43 percent provided for staff to participate in state optometric/paraoptometric association training.
- 52 percent pay for staff to become certified. 70 percent pay for staff to attend or participate in related continuing education courses.
- 85 percent are interested in learning how to more effectively utilize their staff. 63 percent preferred to receive this training at state meetings and 50 percent would like to see online CE offered for this training.
- Training (58 percent), compensation (55 percent) and motivation (53 percent) were the issues the ODs reported relating to non-OD office staff.
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|For the Record|
|In the September article, "Corneal Staining: The IER Matrix Study" on solution-induced corneal staring with silicone hydrogel lenses, the rate of SICS for the PureVision-Opti-Free Replenish combination was reported as 20.9 percent. However, the authors inadvertently omitted a note that "all people wearing this combination had not completed the full three months." All remaining wearers have now completed the full three months wear of the combination, and the rate of SICS is 14.2 percent for the completed three months data.|
In the June issue on p. 5, an Industry Brief discussed a study about post-LASIK patients who used Blink Contacts (AMO) and showed improvement in certain signs. This study was self initiated by the study authors and not by AMO, as was stated. Contact Lens Spectrum regrets the error.