- Our Focus
Innovation in sight
Novartis Ophthalmology is reimagining the treatment and prevention of visual impairment and blindness. By working to push the boundaries of medicine and technology, we aim to develop life-changing gene therapies, next-generation pharmaceuticals, and transformative technologies for diseases and conditions spanning every area of eye disease, from the front to the back of the eye.
A bold vision for eye care
Hear first-hand from Novartis Ophthalmology’s Worldwide Franchise Head Nikos Tripodis and Development Unit Head Dirk Sauer on how Novartis is working to address eye diseases from front to back of the eye.
We have pioneered treatments for many retinal diseases. Our focus areas include neovascular age-related macular degeneration (nAMD), which affects an estimated 20 to 25 million people worldwide and is a leading cause of severe vision loss, as well as diabetic macular edema (DME) and retinal vein occlusion (RVO).
Dry eye diseases
Dry eye, a multifactorial disease of the ocular surface, impacts more than 344 million patients worldwide1. Dry eye can result from a range of genetic diseases and inflammatory disorders. Patients may experience a range of often severely painful symptoms and/or impaired vision. While palliative treatments, like artificial tears, provide transient relief, we are working on novel therapies designed to address the root causes of the disorder.
Other external eye diseases, including presbyopia
We are investing in developing the first pharmaceutical treatment with potential disease-modifying activity for presbyopia, a disease that affects 85% of people over 45 years old. There are currently no disease-modifying pharmacological treatments available to reverse the loss of near-distance vision.
More than 60 million people globally are affected by glaucoma, which can lead to progressive damage of the optic nerve and may lead to blindness. Current therapies help control disease progression by lowering eye pressure. Novartis is researching neuroprotective therapies in the hope of finding a cure for this silent thief of sight.
We see cell and gene therapy as a new frontier in medicine that can enable us to transform eye care for patients suffering from a variety of rare ophthalmic diseases. Gene therapy aims to treat or prevent genetic disease by seeking to augment, replace or suppress one or more mutated genes with functional copies, for a lasting therapeutic effect.
People are visually impaired worldwide
Of all vision impairment can be prevented or cured
Of people living with blindness are aged 50 and above
Of visual impairment results from chronic eye diseases