Merakris, Miracles In Sight Eye Partnership for New Ophthalmic Product
Research Triangle Park-based biotechnology company Merakris Therapeutics is providing a new eye-care product to eye surgeons and their patients in the Carolinas and Texas, thanks to a partnership with Winston-Salem nonprofit Miracles in Sight.
Under the agreement, Merakris will supply its Opticyte Ophthalmic Repair Grafts to MIS-affiliated eye surgeons in North and South Carolina and Texas. MIS, originally known as the North Carolina Eye Bank, is one of the largest nonprofit eye banks in the world. It provides tissue for corneal transplants that restore, preserve and improve sight. The organization is associated with 70 eye clinics in the three states that will have ready access to Opticyte through the partnership, according to a news release from Merakris.
Opticyte Amniotic Ophthalmic Repair Grafts provide a biological barrier intended to protect the surface of the cornea – the clear outer layer at the front of the eyeball – during healing, and to help prevent the formation of scar tissue. Merakris said the product also supports cell attachment and ingrowth and is commonly used as a supplemental barrier in patients with dry eye disease and other corneal defects.
The grafts – available in numerous shapes and sizes to address a variety of surgical needs – are derived from amniotic membrane, or amnion, the innermost layer of the placenta. This tissue, which can promote healing, is donated by consenting mothers after cesarean-section births.
“We are excited to begin this new partnership with Miracles In Sight as we continue to grow through new additions to the Merakris family of products,” said Chris Broderick, the company’s CEO. “During the past year we have launched Opticyte through a variety of channels, ranging from business-to-business sales to strategic partnerships like this one. We know the MIS team well and we are eager to fully support their clinics across these three service areas.”
Kristen McCoy, vice president of surgical applications at MIS, said the partnership “aligns with our mission and allows us to expand our service options. We are excited to work with Merakris to make the Opticyte product available to our community of physicians.”
Miracles In Sight is scheduled to debut Opticyte at the annual meeting of the American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery in Las Vegas later this week, July 23 to 27.
Merakris Therapeutics, founded in 2016, is a leader in researching, developing and marketing regenerative healthcare products. The company is pioneering the use of stem cell-derived technologies that promote the healing of damaged tissue. In addition to Opticyte, its products include:
- Dermacyte Amniotic Wound Care Liquid, a non-cellular sterile-filtered amniotic injection that promotes wound healing;
- Dermacyte Matrix, a human amniotic membrane tissue graft that provides a protective covering for skin wounds and surgical sites; and
- Topical Platelet Rich Plasma, a concentrated product used for skin rejuvenation.