The Dutch medical device company SJJ Solutions, the Department of Ophthalmology at Oslo University Hospital and the Laboratory of Adaptive Immunity and Homeostasis of both Oslo University Hospital and University of Oslo, have entered an industry development agreement.
The industry development agreement has been negotiated and signed by Inven2, one of Norway´s largest technology transfer office, on behalf of the scientists and clinicians at Oslo University Hospital and University of Oslo.
The collaboration has resulted in a prototype of a tailor-made syringe optimised for eye injections. The syringe and needle safely deliver a small dose of medicine into the eye. In particular, as silicone oil deposition in the eye is a known side effect of many syringes currently in use, the novel syringe is silicone oil-free.
Kristin Sandereid, Business Developer, Inven2 commented:
“We are very pleased having formed this partnership tailored to the business area of interest for SJJ Solutions. We are looking forward to working together with the company, the researchers and clinicians at Oslo University Hospital and University of Oslo to provide the support necessary for further development of this innovative syringe”.
The syringe is primarily being developed to treat patients with chronic eye diseases such as wet age-related macular degeneration (wet AMD). Wet AMD is a common eye disease leading to severe loss of visual acuity if untreated. Today, wet AMD can be treated with anti-VEGF-inhibitors injected directly into the eyes of the patients, and 4-12 injections are usually needed per year.
Professor Morten C. Moe, Head of Research at Division for Head, Neck and Reconstructive surgery at Oslo University Hospital commented:
“The syringe the team has developed provides ophthalmologists with an optimal tool for treating patients needing regular eye injections. At our Department of Ophthalmology, we give approximately 30.000 anti-VEGF injections to 4000 patients each year. This number will increase as the population gets older”.
Jasper Schootstra, CEO SJJ Solutions added:
“World-wide around 20 million people are diagnosed with wet-AMD, and current projections suggest that this number will increase to 28 million in 2040. Anti-VEGF medication can be very expensive. Since each patient needs up to 12 injections per year, the economic burden these medicines place on healthcare systems around the world is enormous.
While the developed product(s) will enable safer delivery of medicines into the eye it will also enable the user to deal in a more efficient manner with the amount of medication available and therefore enable more cost-effective procedures as well.
All in all, it’s great for a company like ours to have found a partner which can supplement our strengths by providing top of the class in-depth scientifically sound data and research.”
A prototype of the syringe has been produced, and researchers at The Laboratory of Adaptive Immunity and Homeostasis are currently documenting that the syringe possesses optimal features for storage and shelf-life with and without anti-VEGF inhibitors. When the syringe is documented safe and effective, it will be put in production.
Head of The Laboratory of Adaptive Immunity and Homeostasis at Oslo University Hospital and University of Oslo, Jan Terje Andersen, commented,
“We are very excited to be part of this industry collaboration with SJJ Solutions together with Morten Moe, Magne Sivertsen, Øystein Jørstad and the rest of their colleagues at the Department of Ophthalmology. It is great that our in-depth research and knowledge about antibodies can provide this much needed product with the required quality measures and documentation.”