Allotex, an ophthalmic biologics and device company developing therapeutic solutions to treat presbyopia, hyperopia and myopia, and 3D-Micromac, a supplier of laser micromachining systems for the photovoltaic, electronics and medical device markets, have announced that they have entered into a master cooperative agreement. The two companies will work together to develop and market a laser system for precisely shaping human corneal allografts used to create natural lenses, which can be administered in an outpatient visit.
Made from human collagen, Allotex's natural allograft lenses can be used to treat the most common refractive errors that cause people to need vision correction. To be implanted successfully, these lenses must be produced to exacting dimensions much smaller than the thickness of a human hair. Under the agreement, 3D-Micromac will design, develop and produce - exclusively for Allotex - a high-precision, compact excimer laser system for machining the lenses. Allotex will handle sales and marketing of the system to ophthalmologists and ophthalmic clinics.
According to Allotex CEO Dr David Muller, 3D-Micromac's laser micromachining expertise and system know-how will play a key role in the manufacture of these precision lenses. ‘We have been working with 3D-Micromac for over a year on the initial prototype development,’ he noted. ‘It was clear from the start that 3D-Micromac has the right technology, experience and approach to make our partnership a success. With this agreement, we have set the stage for what we anticipate will be a highly successful commercial rollout of our mutual technologies.’
‘We view Allotex's innovative lens technology as the future of permanent eye correction,’ commented Tino Petsch, CEO of 3D-Micromac. ‘We look forward to creating a unique success story by combining their potentially life-changing technology with our laser micromachining expertise.’
3D-Micromac will deliver the first prototype, developed in conjunction with Allotex experts, to the Allotex R&D facility in Zurich, Switzerland, this month, with a second system slated for delivery to Allotex's commercial facility in Boston, Mass. Allotex expects to begin European trials in the second quarter of 2017 and commercial rollout of 3D-Micromac's laser systems and Allotex lenses in early 2018.