Contact lenses are not what they used to be. Technological advances have greatly improved contact lenses and lens care products.
There has been only one new daily wear lens to come out in the past 6 months: the MyDay Energys (CooperVision) contact lens, which combines a CooperVision-exclusive aspheric design and material technology to help tiredness and dryness associated with digital eye strain, while the DigitalBoost single vision aspheric design delivers a +0.3 D boost of power to ease strain on eye muscles, so wearers can shift their focus from on screen to off screen with less effort.
CooperVision’s Aquaform Technology hydrates MyDay Energys lenses to twice their weight in water for natural wettability and comfort to help eyes feel less dry, even during times of reduced blinking, according to the company.
MyDay Energys is available in sphere powers of +8.00 D to -12.00 D (0.50 D steps after +5.00 D and -6.00 D), with no plano option and includes built-in UV blocking to help minimize the transmission of harmful UV rays.
The Eyeris Daily lens (Eyeris) isn’t brand new, per se, but it’s worth a reminder that it’s available and a way for patients to buy locally from you online (and can’t be replicated by online retailers). The lens is available in a wide range of spherical parameters, and word has it toric and multifocal options are coming soon.
The Total30 for Astigmatism (Alcon) contact lens was launched in March at the 2023 SECO International meeting in Atlanta. The reusable contact lens is made with Water Gradient material, is designed for wearers with astigmatism, and features biomimetic Celligent Technology, which helps resist bacteria and lipid deposits for a clean lens all month long. Additionally, the Precision Balance 8|4 lens design offers on-eye stability for clear and stable vision.
According to Alcon, Total30 for Astigmatism settles in an average of 60 seconds, within 3˚ of ideal orientation, and has 95% first-lens fit success.
IN THE PIPELINE
Drug Delivery Lenses
LL-BMT1 (MediPrint Ophthalmics)is a drug-eluting contact lens being assessed for the treatment of mild to moderate glaucoma and ocular hypertension. LL-BMT1 is a weekly medicated contact lens releasing bimatoprost being evaluated in the Sustained Innovative Glaucoma and ocular Hypertension Treatment (SIGHT)-2 dose-finding phase 2b study, which is designed to assess dose optimization and is preceded by the SIGHT-1 study that validated the MediPrint process and contact lenses for treating human participants.
TherOptix has two nonrefractive, drug-eluting bandage contact lenses in development: its lead asset, the TetraLens for postoperative pain after corneal cross-linking, cataract surgery, photorefractive keratectomy/laser subepithelial keratomileusis, or similar procedure; and the DexaLens for proliferative vitreoretinopathy. Both lenses are comprised of methafilcon-A and include a drug polymer ring in the periphery ,which is encapsulated within the hydrogel lens for sustained release.
At the Ophthalmology Innovation Summit at SECO, TherOptix’s CEO Monty Montoya noted that the company intends to launch series A financing to fund an Investigational New Drug (IND) submission for TetraLens this year.
MoxiLens (Glint Pharmaceuticals) is another drug-eluting contact lens making its way through the development pipeline. Specifically, the company is commercializing a patented nano barrier technology to treat certain eye diseases. This technology incorporates a drug delivery mechanism into a commercially available, single-use disposable contact lens.
According to the company, the drug-eluting Glint contact lenses maintains transparency, wettability, UV-blocking, and oxygen and ion permeability. Multiple drugs can be programmed to be released from a single disposable contact lens. Glint Pharmaceuticals has an approved IND application for the treatment of corneal infections by antibiotic (moxifloxacin) and the treatment of glaucoma by combination therapy of timolol and dorzolamide. The company has initial clinical data for both lenses with ongoing additional clinical studies.
Johnson & Johnson Vision in December announced the availability of Acuvue Abiliti 1-Day Soft Therapeutic Lenses for Myopia Management in Singapore. The lenses are a breakthrough innovation specifically designed to slow myopia progression and, therefore, are not traditional concentric ring dual focus lenses. The daily wear, single-use, disposable lenses are intended to be used by children who, at the start of treatment, are 7 to 12 years of age, with myopia between -0.75 D and -4.50 D and 1.00 D or less astigmatism, with nondiseased eyes and who are symptomatic (ie, require distance vision correction).
CooperVision in November announced that it added SynergEyes to its CooperVision Specialty EyeCare business unit, a move that “creates a complete portfolio for the treatment of keratoconus and irregular corneas in North America and beyond.” Although terms of the transaction were not disclosed, it was noted in a press release that SynergEyes customers should continue to work with their current representatives.
SOLUTIONS AND DROPS
Bausch + Lomb in December received 510(k) clearance from the FDA for its Biotrue Hydration Boost Contact Lens Rehydrating drops. The preservative-free, multi-dose drops can be used with either soft or rigid gas permeable contact lenses and match the pH of healthy tears for comfort, according to the company. Biotrue Hydration Boost Contact Lens Rehydrating drops will be available in the first half of 2023.
In November, Bausch + Lomb announced that its Biotrue Hydration Plus multipurpose solution had received Business Intelligence Group’s (BIG) 2022 Awards for Business Product of the Year.
Sustainability is growing in importance for many companies, so let’s take a brief look at what some of the contact lens manufacturers are doing to minimize the toll their operations have on the environment.
Alcon is committed to becoming carbon neutral across its global operations by 2030 and says it will continue building on its use of renewable energy sources. Several of its manufacturing sites are zero waste to landfill certified, and Alcon plans to achieve 100% nonhazardous waste landfill diversion at each of its manufacturing sites and distribution centers by 2030.
For the second year in a row, Bausch + Lomb’s One by One and Biotrue Eye Care Recycling programs have been named a gold winner in the Most Environmentally Friendly Service of the Year category by the 2022 Best in Biz Awards. “Bausch + Lomb’s recycling programs make it possible to properly recycle used lens, eye care, and lens care items, which can be used to help create a variety of post-consumer products,” according to a company news release.
CooperVision in January announced the expansion of its net plastic neutrality initiative to include its Biofinity family and MiSight 1 day contact lenses in the United States, making its most popular contact lens brands net plastic neutral. Additionally, on average, CooperVision says that more than 95% of the materials in its production processes are recycled and more than 99% of the plastic components generated in its manufacturing process are recycled.
Here’s a fun fact: all of Eyeris’ upper and lower lens molds are collected after use to create the company’s eye-shaped trial cases.
And finally, all of Johnson & Johnson Vision’s Acuvue contact lenses are made with 100% renewable electricity, and 100% of the paper packaging (box and leaflet) for its Acuvue lenses comes from responsibly managed forests.
THE INNOVATIVE OD MIND IS TURNED ON
In the past several years, the eye care profession has experienced amazing innovation on all fronts, with first-in-class dry eye therapies, and several pharmaceutical companies at a time each aiming to be the first with a treatment for presbyopia and geographic atrophy. We’ve also seen a nonsurgical option approved for the treatment of ptosis. And yet, the hunger to be better—to do better—has yet to wane.
We can’t wait to see what’s next to come in the contact lens space.