EyeYon Medical provides the only non-invasive medical device for the prevention and treatment of corneal edema, a common and painful eye disease. With the latest funding, they plan to develop a new product to make surgery obsolete
EyeYon Medical announced on Thursday that it raised $3.6 million in investment from TriVentures, Pontifax, a prominent Indian distributor, the Israeli Chief Scientist and existing investors. Founded by Dr. Ofer Daphna, senior ophthalmologist at the Kaplan Medical Center, and Dr. Arie Marcovich, a senior cornea surgeon, EyeYon Medical offers a noninvasive solution to corneal edema, a common, painful eye condition usually treated by topical medication and ointments, bandage contact lens (which can increase the chance of infection) or corneal transplant surgery.
The condition occurs when the thin, transparent cover of the eye becomes inflamed, often resulting from ocular surgery trauma, infection, swelling, and over-use of certain kinds of contact lenses. Corneal edema, or swelling, mostly affects people over the age 50, particularly women who have gone through menopause, as well as those with adverse reactions after ocular surgery.
More than 40,000 corneal transplants are performed in the United States each year, which presents a clear market opportunity if EyeYon can reduce, or ultimately eliminate, the need for surgery. EyeYon Medical’s patented therapeutic Hyper-CL, two-week disposable contact lens relieves pain from corneal swelling by extracting fluids through osmosis from the cornea, thereby smoothing its surface.
Making Corneal Transplants Obsolete
In addition to the pain-relieving lens, EyeYon Medical has its sights set on developing an implant that aims to cure corneal edema completely, thus eliminating the need for a corneal transplant, the wait for which may be up to a year. This latest funding round is intended to help EyeYon Medical cover clinical trials, introduce the product to global markets, and continue development and commercialization of further products. To date, the company has raised $4.3 million since founding in 2011 and entering the VLX (Van Leer Xenia) Ventures tech incubator, a partnership between two leading Israeli early-stage investment centers, Xenia Venture Capital (TASE:XENA) and Van Leer Ventures.
“This funding is a very significant vote of confidence in the company, from both leading funds and existing investors,” said EyeYon Medical CEO Nahum Ferara in a statement on the funding announcement. “The new investment will allow us to expand the company’s quality staff and promote accelerated development in innovative products to improve the world of Ophthalmology.”
Eye On the Prize
While the biotech industry is flush with innovation, EyeYon Medical is the only non-invasive medical technology focused on the prevention and treatment of corneal edema that this reporter could find. Given EyeYon Medical’s unique technology to treat corneal edema with long-wear, disposable contact lenses – an option that is undoubtedly much cheaper than corneal transplant surgery – the company is positioned to revolutionize the treatment of the common eye disease.
However, as is the case with all medical tech companies, the main question is a matter of time: Will EyeYon, a four-year-old company, be able to develop their product, pass clinical trials, and get approved by the FDA before someone else creates a solution that is cheaper and more effective? For that, we will have to just wait and see.
To learn more about EyeYon’s technology, watch the video below: