More than 300 million people worldwide are at risk today of losing their eyesight due to diseases leading to functional loss of the retina.* The number of people suffering from vision loss is expected to rise due to aging populations and widening health inequity gaps. Undiagnosed and untreated retinal diseases can have a profound impact on people’s lives, potentially leading to isolation, loss of independence, depression, and reduced quality of life. Unfortunately, diagnosis often occurs too late to prevent vision loss, and for many conditions, no treatment is available at all.
The new partnership will focus on identifying markers of early stages of retinal diseases by leveraging ZEISS Medical Technology’s cloud-connected devices and AI-assisted analysis of its extensive image data sets. This will provide a basis for clinical studies for development of more personalized and precise treatments of early stages of chronic retinal disease as well as earlier detection and prediction capabilities to preserve vision through new treatment pathways.
“At ZEISS, we have long understood that where collaboration thrives, innovation emerges,” said Euan S. Thomson, Head of the Ophthalmology Strategic Business Unit and Head of the Digital Business Unit for ZEISS Medical Technology. “With our announcement today with Boehringer Ingelheim, we’re building on our strategy to innovate through partnerships in order to make breakthrough discoveries to combat vision loss and improve people’s lives.”
“Our partnership with ZEISS will allow us to develop precision therapies delivering the right treatment for the right patient at the right time to prevent vision loss by intervening before irreversible damage occurs. It is part of our commitment to champion early detection and treatment and will contribute to transforming the lives of people with serious eye disease,” said Ulrike Graefe-Mody, Ph.D., Head of Retinal Health at Boehringer Ingelheim.
As a leading pioneer of science in optics for more than 100 years, ZEISS’s medical expertise and digital leadership is foundational to the ZEISS Medical Ecosystem and its digitally connected workflows. This connected and secure architecture integrates diagnostic and therapeutic devices supported by a cloud-based platform in which data aggregation, automation and AI analytics can be harnessed to drive new discoveries.
Boehringer Ingelheim has a leading understanding of disease biology aiming at a paradigm change in retinal health through early detection and intervention to achieve meaningful improvements for patients. Over the past decade Boehringer Ingelheim has built a diverse pipeline, which focuses on three priority areas to address retinal conditions - the preservation of vascular function, targeting inflammation and neuroprotection.
Click here for the full release:https://www.boehringer-ingelheim.com/science-innovation/human-health-innovation/boehringer-and-zeiss-partnership-eye-diseases?auHash=n2thfphi3cpKoj_GxyxhoWGqmhRDlOzIYhDvK5zfYMg
* World Health Organization, World Report on Vision, Executive Summary, October 8, 2019, https://www.who.int/publications/i/item/world-report-on-vision
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