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NEWS SPECTRUM

COOPERVISION ANNOUNCES BRILLIANT FUTURES MYOPIA MANAGEMENT PROGRAM

CooperVision announced the Brilliant Futures Myopia Management Program. According to the company, the program features a transparent, defined protocol for care, meaning that patients are aware of everything included in the program (including services and lenses) while it promotes confidence and efficiency for eyecare practitioners (ECPs); free product shipping and returns; and an interactive mobile app to keep patients engaged with the practice and their program of care.

ECPs who gain certification to implement the Brilliant Futures Myopia Management Program in their practice will have online access to the latest information about myopia management, insights on parent and patient beliefs and behaviors, and how those apply to prescribing the company’s MiSight 1 Day lenses. Every certified provider will also be connected with a specialist in both the clinical and practice integration elements of the comprehensive program. Additionally, practices will receive patient and parent education tools, staff training tools, practice integration support, and community outreach and engagement resources. ■

MOJO VISION DEVELOPING SMART CONTACT LENS

Mojo Vision, the Invisible Computing company, announced a pair of initiatives aimed at assisting people who have low or impaired vision. The U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) has granted Breakthrough Device Designation to Mojo for the development of its smart contact lens, and Mojo announced a new partnership with Vista Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired.

The smart contact lens, called the Mojo Lens, has a built-in Mojo Vision 14K PPI Display, which delivers a pixel pitch of more than 14,000ppi and a pixel density of more than 200Mppi. The display provides information to users without forcing them to look down at a screen. Mojo calls this eyes-up experience Invisible Computing. The company is currently demonstrating a working prototype of the device, but it is not yet available for sale anywhere in the world.

Mojo Vision also announced a new partnership with Vista Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired, a Palo Alto, CA-based nonprofit that offers rehabilitation services to more than 3,000 children and adults who have blindness or impaired vision each year. Through the partnership, Vista Center clients will play a direct role in defining Mojo’s technology and providing input to the company’s team of scientists and engineers. In turn, the Mojo Lens will be designed to increase contrast, highlight edges, magnify objects (like text), and zoom-out to spot check surroundings, helping people who have low vision navigate the world and increase their social independence, according to the company. ■

BCLA WEBINAR DISCUSSES SOFT LENS FITTING

The latest British Contact Lens Association (BCLA) webinar discussed soft contact lenses. It examined dropout rates and offered suggestions regarding how eyecare practitioners can “get control” over their soft lens fittings. The online session, which was held on Feb. 26 from 6.30 p.m. to 7.30 p.m. (GMT), was presented by Eef van der Worp, BSc, PhD. He helped viewers gain an understanding of the limitations of the current methods of soft lens fitting and discussed new potential methods of soft lens fitting, while looking at a new mathematical model to possibly predict soft lens fit success. The session evaluated when to use standard soft lens designs for normal eyes and also discussed the use of custom-made lens designs for irregular eyes. ■

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2020 CLMA AWARD WINNERS

The Contact Lens Manufacturers Association (CLMA) bestowed the following awards on Jan. 25, 2020 at its Rising Stars Reception held at The Tropicana - Las Vegas.

  • Honorary Recognition Award – In appreciation for a lifetime of dedication and service to the contact lens industry. Gretchyn M. Bailey, Adam W. Farkas, MD, MBA
  • Industry Enhancement Award – For unselfish dedication to the CLMA and the contact lens industry. Ron Walker
  • Trailblazers Award – For outstanding achievement in product development to the enhancement of the contact lens industry. Jerome A. Legerton, OD, MS, MBA
  • The Leonardo da Vinci Award – For vision in establishing the focus of the CLMA and dedication to the achievement of its goals. C. Lee Dickerson
  • The Dr. Josef Dallos Award – For outstanding contribution to the development and advancement of the contact lens industry and for service to humanity. Karla Zadnik, OD, PhD
  • 2018 GPLI Practitioner of the Year – For outstanding professional expertise in fitting customized contact lenses to benefit patients with improved vision and corneal health and to advance the contact lens field. Jeffrey J. Walline, OD, PhD.

OPTOMETRY STUDENT CHALLENGE WINNERS ANNOUNCED

Three optometry students presented scientific posters at the 2020 Global Specialty Lens Symposium in Las Vegas as winners of the Optometry Student Challenge, a program designed by ABB Optical Group, in collaboration with Paragon Vision Sciences, to foster the study of contact lenses. The winners were Shuyi (Suzy) Chen, of the State University of New York (SUNY) College of Optometry in New York, for the topic of the use of orthokeratology to treat myopia regression after small incision lenticule extraction (SMILE) surgery; Preet Dhami, from the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences (MCPHS) School of Optometry, for the topic of the use of a scleral notch to maximize coverage of the ocular surface in patients with exposure keratoconjunctivitis; and Elton Wong, also from SUNY College of Optometry, for the topic of selecting the best lens out of four for the treatment of epithelial basement membrane dystrophy (EBMD) plus irregular corneal astigmatism.

More than 86 optometry students submitted contact lens-related abstracts focused on study projects or student-based case histories for the chance to win a travel stipend of $1,500 to attend the symposium and convert their abstracts into scientific posters. The challenge, which is hosted yearly, is open to students in their third and fourth years of study. Abstracts are judged on academic merit by a panel of industry experts. ■

RESEARCHERS DEVELOP SELF-MOISTURIZING CONTACT LENSES

Researchers at Tohoku University have developed a new type of smart contact lenses that may prevent dry eyes. The self-moisturizing system, which is described in the journal Advanced Materials Technologies, maintains a layer of fluid between the contact lens and the eye using a novel mechanism.

According to the researchers, one of the biggest problems with contact lenses is that they can cause “dry eye syndrome” due to reduced blinking and increased moisture evaporation. To tackle this problem, the researchers developed a new mechanism that keeps the lens moist. The system uses electroosmotic flow (EOF), which causes liquid to flow when a voltage is applied across a charged surface. In this case, a current applied to a hydrogel causes fluid to flow upward from a patient’s temporary tear reservoir behind the lower eyelid to the surface of the eye.

The researchers also explored the possibility of using a wireless power supply for the contact lenses. They tested two types of batteries—a magnesium-oxygen battery and an enzymatic fructose-oxygen fuel cell—both of which are known to be safe and non-toxic for living cells. They showed that the system can be successfully powered by these biobatteries, which can be mounted directly on the charged contact lens.

Further research is needed to develop improved self-moisturizing contact lenses that are tougher and capable of operating at smaller currents. ■

OME TO PRESENT LIVE CE EVENTS

Optometric Management Education (OME) will present a series of live CE courses covering myopia management, dry eye and ocular surface disease, or practice management tools.

The series launched with a two-hour CE course titled “Mythbusters: Myopia Edition,” which provided attendees with a dynamic understanding of the current landscape for myopia care. The course, presented by OME faculty members April Jasper, OD, and Mark A. Bullimore, MCOptom, PhD, offered insights into myopia, including current research related to myopia progression and management, practical steps on how optometrists can be proactive in helping myopic patients and their parents; and assumptions about myopia management compared with what the current research reveals. The program was held on Jan. 16 in Springfield, IL. Another session was held on Feb. 13 in New York City.

Additionally, Art Epstein, OD, hosted “Dr. Art Epstein Teaches Dry Eye and Ocular Surface Disease” on Feb. 15 in Philadelphia and Feb. 29 in Houston. In it, he presented an evidence-based approach to dry eye care with extensive clinical examples. Additional sessions will take place on March 21 in Tampa, FL and on April 4 in San Jose, CA.

A third course in this OME series was “2020 and Beyond,” which was held on Feb. 28 in Oahu, HI. Additional sessions will be held on March 20 in West Palm Beach, FL; April 17 in Tysons Corner, VA; May 17 in Seattle; Apr. 14 in Columbus, OH; Sept. 11 in Pittsburgh; and Nov. 20 in Sacramento, CA.

OME, which specializes in producing clinical and practice management educational events, is a joint venture between PentaVision LLC (publisher of Contact Lens Spectrum and Contact Lenses Today) and Distinctive Strategies and Leadership, LLC. For more information or to register, visit www.optometricmanagementeducation.com . ■

BAUSCH + LOMB, TERRACYCLE TO LAUNCH RECYCLING PROGRAM IN CANADA

Bausch + Lomb (B+L) announced that it has partnered with TerraCycle to launch the Bausch + Lomb Every Contact Counts recycling program in select eyecare offices across Canada. Through the joint initiative, Canadians who wear contact lenses now have a way to responsibly recycle their traditionally non-recyclable disposable contact lenses and blister pack packaging, according to the companies.

Through the Bausch + Lomb Every Contact Counts recycling program, consumers can search for their nearest participating eyecare professional on the interactive map found at www.terracycle.com/en-CA/brigades/bausch-and-lomb-en-ca to recycle all brands of disposable contact lenses and blister pack packaging through that location.

After being collected at a designated recycling location, the contact lenses and blister packs are shipped to a TerraCycle recycling facility, where they are separated and cleaned. The metal layers of the blister packs are recycled separately, while the contact lenses and plastic blister pack components are melted into plastic that can be remolded to create new products.

In addition to Canada, Bausch + Lomb also has similar contact lens recycling programs in The Netherlands, the United States, and Australia. ■

AOA TO MAKE 2020 THE YEAR OF THE EYE EXAM

The American Optometric Association (AOA) announced the official launch of the #2020EyeExam campaign to make eye health and vision care a national priority in 2020. The public awareness campaign underscores the importance of receiving an in-person comprehensive eye examination with an AOA doctor of optometry as part of an annual healthcare routine.

Through the #2020EyeExam Employer Pledge program, AOA is spreading the message even further by enlisting visionary employers nationwide to pledge their support for raising employee awareness about the importance of a comprehensive eye exam. For more information on the #2020EyeExam initiative, please visit AOA.org/2020 . ■

INDUSTRY BRIEFS

  • CooperVision has named Jane Agbontaen as senior brand director for Myopia Management – Americas. In this newly created role, Ms. Agbontaen will be responsible for the strategic planning and execution of all activities that support the U.S. growth of CooperVision’s myopia management portfolio—specifically the Brilliant Futures Myopia Management Program and its MiSight 1 Day contact lenses. Ms. Agbontaen has more than 20 years of professional experience in the healthcare space and with large medical device players such as Hologic, Abbott Medical Optics, and Johnson & Johnson DePuy Synthes.
  • Johnson & Johnson Vision announced that Charissa Lee, OD, has been appointed to the position of head, North America professional affairs. In this capacity, Dr. Lee will be responsible for professional relations, professional education, and advocacy efforts for Johnson & Johnson Vision Care while also continuing to oversee the Johnson & Johnson Institute. Since May 2014, she has served as director of Professional Education. Prior to joining Johnson & Johnson Vision Care, Dr. Lee operated a private practice in Irvine, CA and was a professional affairs consultant and program director at the Johnson & Johnson Institute.
  • The European Contact Lens Society of Ophthalmologists (ECLSO) will be holding the 49th European Contact Lens and Ocular Surface Congress on Sept. 18 and 19 in Paris. The event will include sessions on keratoconus, scleral lenses, ocular surface disease, and myopia. One highlight will be a summary of interesting topics that were introduced at other international symposia and congresses. The Kersley Lecture will be presented by Dr. Ebru Toker, former ECLSO vice president. EACCME accreditation is pending. For more information or to register, visit www.eclso.eu .
  • EyePoint Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and Ocumension Therapeutics announced an exclusive license agreement for the development and commercialization of Dexycu (dexamethasone intraocular suspension) 9% for the treatment of postoperative inflammation following ocular surgery in Mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan. Dexycu is marketed by EyePoint in the United States. EyePoint maintains worldwide development and commercialization rights outside of the territories licensed to Ocumension.
  • Brien Holden Vision Institute’s (BHVI) research collaborator Hai Yen Eye Care has opened a research center in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. The Hai Yen Vision Research Institute is the first of its kind in Vietnam, a research arm in the private ophthalmology sector. According to BHVI, its collaboration with Hai Yen Eye Care reaffirms BHVI’s commitment to increase its global reach in the area of myopia management.
  • Nicox SA announced that its partner, Bausch + Lomb, has received approval for Vyzulta (latanoprostene bunod ophthalmic solution), 0.024% in Hong Kong and Argentina. Vyzulta is indicated for the reduction of intraocular pressure (IOP) in patients who have open-angle glaucoma or ocular hypertension. In unrelated news, Nicox SA has received approval from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office for a formulation patent for NCX 470, extending the U.S. patent coverage to 2039. NCX 470 is a novel second-generation nitric oxide (NO)-donating bimatoprost analog for the lowering of intraocular pressure in patients who have open-angle glaucoma or ocular hypertension.
  • The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has granted CooperVision, Inc. approval for its new Biofinity toric multifocal contact lenses. The product combines the optical designs of CooperVision’s Biofinity toric and Biofinity multifocal lenses to provide patients with both astigmatism and presbyopia vision correction, according to the company. CooperVision plans to make the lenses available later this year to U.S. eyecare professionals, followed by other markets. In addition, lens parameters and other details regarding Biofinity toric multifocal will be made public in the coming months.
  • BostonSight announced a partnership with Eaglet Eye that involves the newly available Image-Guided feature from BostonSight Scleral: Scleral-IG. This partnership integrates a direct connection between Eaglet ESP and FitConnect, BostonSight’s web-based lens design and order management platform.
  • Aerie Pharmaceuticals, Inc. appointed Michelle Senchyna, PhD, as vice president, Clinical Development and Medical Affairs, reporting to David A. Hollander, MD, MBA, Aerie’s Chief Research & Development Officer. Dr. Senchyna will lead the clinical development and medical affairs strategy for the company. She most recently served as executive director of Ophthalmology at Allergan. Prior to joining Allergan, she held leadership positions in R&D and Medical Affairs at Alcon and Panoptica. She began her career as an associate professor at the University of Waterloo, School of Optometry, with research focused on ocular surface diseases and contact lens biomaterial development.