Dec 19, 2018
  • Acquisition further expands Alcon's portfolio of comprehensive solutions for patients with dry eye
  • Tear Film's iLux® Device offers innovative, customizable treatment for Meibomian Gland Dysfunction, a leading cause of dry eye
  • Alcon plans to further expand availability of this technology throughout the U.S. and Canada in early 2019.

Fort Worth, Texas December 19, 2018 - Alcon, the global leader in eye care and a division of Novartis, today announced that it has acquired Tear Film Innovations, Inc. ("Tear Film"), a privately-held company and manufacturer of the iLux® Device, an innovative therapeutic device used to treat Meibomian Gland Dysfunction, a leading cause of dry eye.

Handheld and portable, the iLux® Device enables eye care professionals to directly target a patient's blocked meibomian glands and provide therapy through an in-office treatment. Using the iLux® Device, a practitioner can warm the eyelids via disposable silicone pads to address blocked meibomian glands through the application of light-based heating. While applying the iLux® Device, the practitioner can view the eyelid margin and apply manually-controlled compression to express blockages, making adjustments as needed to tailor treatment to the individual needs of the patient. Most treatments can be completed in a matter of minutes. 

The Tear Film acquisition expands Alcon's leading portfolio of ocular health products, including several leading treatments for the temporary relief of dry eye symptoms.

"With the acquisition of Tear Film, we're excited to bring this latest innovation to treat the millions of people around the world who suffer from dry eye," said Andy Pawson, Alcon President & General Manager, Global Vision Care Franchise. "Alcon remains committed to improving the lives of patients around the world through innovative technologies like the iLux® Device to address significant unmet needs in eye care."

The iLux® Device received 510(k) clearance from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in December 2017, and was officially launched by Tear Film in May 2018 at the annual meeting of the American Society for Cataract and Refractive Surgery.

"Since launching the iLux® Device earlier this year, we've seen an enthusiastic response from eye care professionals who have already begun to incorporate it as an advanced treatment option for patients suffering from Meibomian Gland Dysfunction," said Rob Thornhill, CEO of Tear Film. "Now, as part of Alcon, we're eager to bring this technology to even more offices throughout the world."

The iLux® Device is currently available in the U.S. and Canada. Alcon expects to announce plans to expand to other countries in 2019.

This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the United States Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 that can generally be identified by words such as "plans," "in early 2019," "portfolio," "committed," "launched," "launching," "enthusiastic response," "eager," "later next year," "expects," "will," "potential," or similar expressions, or by express or implied discussions regarding the potential impact on Novartis or Alcon of the acquisition of Tear Film, including express or implied discussions regarding potential future sales or earnings of Novartis and Alcon, and any potential strategic benefits, synergies or opportunities expected as a result of the acquisition; or regarding potential additional marketing submissions or approvals for the iLux® Device, potential expanded availability of the iLux® Device, potential commercial success of the iLux® Device, and potential future revenues from the iLux® Device.  Such forward looking statements are based on our current beliefs and expectations regarding future events, and are subject to significant known and unknown risks and uncertainties. Should one or more of these risks or uncertainties materialize, or should underlying assumptions prove incorrect, actual results may vary materially from those set forth in the forward looking statements. You should not place undue reliance on these statements. In particular, our expectations could be affected by, among other things: regulatory actions or delays or government regulation generally, including potential regulatory actions or delays relating with respect to the iLux® Device; the potential that the strategic benefits, synergies or opportunities expected from the proposed acquisition may not be realized or may take longer to realize than expected; the uncertainties inherent in the research and development, including clinical trial results and additional analysis of existing clinical data; our ability to obtain or maintain proprietary intellectual property protection; the ability of Alcon to successfully promote and expand access to the iLux® Device; safety, quality or manufacturing issues; global trends toward health care cost containment, including government, payor and general public pricing and reimbursement pressures; the particular preferences of physicians and patients; and other risks and factors referred to in Novartis AG's current Form 20-F on file with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) or in the initial Form 20-F filed by Alcon with the SEC. Novartis and Alcon are providing the information in this press release as of this date and do not undertake any obligation to update any forward-looking statements as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

About Alcon
Alcon is the global leader in eye care. As a division of Novartis, we offer the broadest portfolio of products to enhance sight and improve people's lives. Our products touch the lives of more than 260 million people each year living with conditions like cataracts, glaucoma, retinal diseases and refractive errors, and there are millions more who are waiting for solutions to meet their eye care needs. Our purpose is reimagining eye care, and we do this through innovative products, partnerships with eye care professionals and programs that enhance access to quality eye care. Learn more at

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About Novartis
Novartis is reimagining medicine to improve and extend people's lives. As a leading global medicines company, we use innovative science and digital technologies to create transformative treatments in areas of great medical need. In our quest to find new medicines, we consistently rank among the world's top companies investing in research and development. Novartis products reach nearly 1 billion people globally and we are finding innovative ways to expand access to our latest treatments. About 125 000 people of more than 140 nationalities work at Novartis around the world. Find out more at

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