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Bausch & Lomb Licenses Technology From Talecris To Battle Retina Detachment

Posted August 29, 2006

— Talecris Biotherapeutics

is licensing rights to technology it is developing for treatment of blood clots to Bausch & Lomb.

The eye care company wants to utilize Talecris' rPlasmin technology to fight retina detachments.

Financial terms were not disclosed. The agreement expands a contract under which Bausch & Lomb worked with Bayer Biological products. Talecris bought the Bayer division. Its headquarters are in RTP.

Talecris is pursuing uses of enzymes derived from Plasmin to dissolve blood clots.

Bausch & Lomb is already enrolling patients in clinical trials to evaluate Plasmin's ability to relieve retinal traction, or pulling on the retina, that leads to detachment of the retina.

Some 28,000 retina detachments occur a year, according to eMedicine.com.

"Bausch & Lomb is actively pursuing new compounds, new therapies and technologies to treat diseases that rob people of their sight," said Praveen Tyle, Bausch & Lomb's chief scientific officer and senior vice president of global research and development. "Plasmin technology has the potential to treat multiple conditions for which vitrectomy surgery now is used. We are already developing plasma-derived Plasmin for ocular indications. This agreement is significant because it gives us the opportunity to develop a next-generation recombinant version with the potential to reach more global markets."

Vitrectomy is surgery to remove portions of the vitreous, or clear gel, that makes up the inner eye.

Bausch & Lomb will be responsible for development of rPlasmin in ophthalmology and will make milestone payments as well as royalties based on product sales.

"Talecris is excited to expand into the development and manufacture of recombinant therapies, and is pleased that Bausch & Lomb finds additional value in rPlasmin," said Steve Petteway, Talecris' senior vice president of research and development. "By partnering with Bausch & Lomb, we're expanding the potential applications for rPlasmin to a field that could benefit thousands of additional patients."

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