LinCor Biosciences, a developer and manufacturer of bioengineered corneas, has announced a major investment of $500,000 by the Indiana Lions Eye Bank in Indianapolis. The company’s cornea has shown complete biocompatibility in extensive clinical studies in animals and in a long term human clinical trial, according to a company news release.
“The investment by the Indiana Lions Eye Bank will accelerate the company’s final pre-market activities, Dr. James Socks, CEO of LinCor Biosciences, said in the news release. "The bioengineered cornea will help reduce the tremendous shortage of donor corneas in most countries around the world.”
The World Health Organization estimates 10 million people are blind in one or both eyes due to corneal disease or injury who could potentially benefit from a corneal transplant. Dr. Socks projects the company’s cornea will be available commercially late in the third quarter of 2015. The price is anticipated to be less than 1/3 that of a human donor cornea from a US eye bank or less than $1,000 per bioengineered cornea. Additionally, as manufacturing efficiencies improve, the cost of goods will decrease allowing the company to continually lower its selling price enabling more people in need to have their sight restored. “We want to reach far down the economic ladder of those in need for corneal transplants,” said Dr. Socks.
Mr. Timothy Fischer, CEO of Indiana Lions Eye Bank, said that by responsible social investing in LinCor Biosciences, his organization will be able to further its mandate and that of the Lions International sight restoration programs. Mr. Fischer has joined the Board of Directors of LinCor Biosciences.
LinCor Biosciences has teamed with the not-for-profit Corneal Transplant Foundation said Jake Requard, Executive Director of the Foundation and Vice President of LinCor Biosciences. The mission of the foundation is to provide a global multi-language website for patient education, to support corneal transplant research, and as funds are raised the foundation will also provide support for financially needy patients to obtain corneal transplants.