TOKYO, April 6, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Retina Implant AG, the leading developer of subretinal implants for patients blinded by retinitis pigmentosa (RP), today announced that Professor Eberhart Zrenner, M.D., coordinating investigator and founding director of the Institute for Ophthalmologic Research at University Eye Hospital, Tuebingen, Germany, presented an update on breakthroughs in artificial vision research including the multicenter clinical trial of Retina Implant's CE marked device at the World Ophthalmology Congress (WOC) in Tokyo between 3 April and 5 April. Professor Zrenner was invited to present to three different symposia that took place in the Tokyo International Forum, the exhibit hall of the WOC.
In his presentations, Prof. Zrenner discussed patient outcomes from Retina Implant's multi-center clinical trials involving 40 patients blind from RP. The visual results of the patients implanted with the Company's technology were the basis for CE mark of the Alpha IMS subretinal implant in July 2013. The majority of patients reported an overall improvement in functional vision, noting the ability to recognize faces, distinguish mid-sized objects such as telephones and read signs on doors.
"Sharing research at international meetings like the World Ophthalmology Congress is integral to ensure the global ophthalmology community stays current on the latest treatments available, especially for conditions that have had historically few or no treatment options," said Professor Eberhart Zrenner, M.D., coordinating investigator and founding director of the Institute for Ophthalmologic Research at University Eye Hospital, Tuebingen, Germany. "The Alpha IMS is a successful example of the innovative treatment solutions the ophthalmology community is interested in and keen to use in clinical practice."
Caroline Chee, senior consultant and head for Surgical Retina, National University Hospital, and clinical associate professor, National University of Singapore, also presented at the Tokyo International Forum. Her presentation, co-authored by Prof. Zrenner and titled, "The Subretinal Implant Alpha IMS to Deliver Useful Vision in Photoreceptor Disease," took place on Saturday, 5 April.
The Alpha IMS is a 3x3 mm2 microchip with 1,500 electrodes that works by mimicking the function of the photoreceptors within the eye and has shown to restore partial vision to those blinded for years, allowing them to perceive light, detect motion, read letters and perform daily tasks with improved acuity and mobility in every day life. In February 2013, results from the mono-center part of the Company's second human clinical trial were published in Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences. It is the first subretinal implant to obtain CE mark approval for distribution in the European Union.
"Our focus is to expand patient access to our subretinal microchip by establishing international clinical partnerships in untapped global markets," said Walter-G Wrobel, CEO of Retina Implant AG. "We are pleased that Professors Zrenner and Chee were afforded the opportunity to present our clinical trial results at the World Ophthalmology Congress, an important conference that brings together the leading eye and degenerative disease specialists from around the globe."
The World Ophthalmology Congress is an international scientific program held in Tokyo that provides a global audience of ophthalmologists with an opportunity to network with recognized international leaders and professionals in the eye community.
About Retina Implant AG
Retina Implant AG is the leading developer of subretinal implants for partially sighted and blind patients. After extensive research with German university hospitals and institutes which began with a large grant from the German Federal Ministry of Research and Education in 1996, Retina Implant AG was founded by Dr. Eberhart Zrenner, professor of Ophthalmology, University of Tuebingen, Germany and his colleagues in 2003 with private investors with the goal of developing the first fully-functioning electronic retinal implant to restore useful vision to the blind. Retina Implant began implanting in human patients in 2005, and started a second multi-center clinical trial in 2010. In July 2013, Retina Implant's wireless subretinal implant technology, Alpha IMS, received CE mark. To learn more, visit http://www.retina-implant.de/.
SOURCE Retina Implant AG