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PRESS RELEASE

Iris Pharma opens its new Paris premises at the Institut de la Vision, one of Europe's major research centers dedicated to eye diseases.
This collaboration will facilitate the accelerated development of new therapies to benefit patients with impaired vision and suffering from ocular ailments.

PARIS, NICE - December 9, 2008 - Iris Pharma, the global specialist in preclinical and clinical ophthalmic research, is cementing its partnership with the "Institut de la Vision", with which it joined forces over a year ago. With the official opening of this international center scheduled for December 11, an R&D team from Iris Pharma is now on board, helping to underpin the joint collaborative efforts of the academic and the industrial teams.

These close ties constitute a first-rate acknowledgment of Iris Pharma’s contribution, and crown almost 20 years of experience in the field of vision-related diseases. Founded in 1989 by Pierre-Paul Elena, a doctor in pharmacology and molecular & cellular biology, Iris Pharma is today Europe's number one contract research organization (CRO) and a world leader in the field of ophthalmology.

In the words of Prof. José-Alain Sahel, Director of the Institut de la Vision: “Our European research center exclusively dedicated to eye diseases today houses several academic and industrial teams specialized in the field of vision, who wish to develop and validate their innovations relating to therapeutic molecules, diagnostic tools and devices to improve the daily lives of the partially sighted. This collaboration with Iris Pharma is a major boon for the Institut de la Vision. Integrated within an academic environment that is uncompromising where the scientific issues are concerned, it provides us with comprehensive oversight of the entire industry, from the major corporations to the innovative startups, that will be so valuable for us. It is our guarantee of maintaining a strategic approach when striking appropriate industrial partnership deals. These kinds of partnerships are vital to the culmination of our research when it comes to making available treatments to patients."

Global public health issues

With the aging of the population leading to a major and lasting increase in vision-related diseases, the acceleration of scientific and biotechnological progress in the field of ophthalmology holds out the promise of major therapeutic innovations that are in the pipeline. The close collaboration initiated between Iris Pharma and the Institut de la Vision is intended to bring to fruition the promise of these developments for partially sighted patients.

Iris Pharma is custodian of a dual culture," explains Dr. Pierre-Paul Elena, “forged on the one hand with the major pharmaceutical industrialists and, on the other, with the most innovative biotechnological companies. By joining forces with the Institut de la Vision, we complement its exceptional resources with our cross-industrial expertise, which allows us to act as an efficient intermediary between basic research, industry and patient care."

The Institute brings its medical expertise to bear in particular through its clinical investigation center, its investment in all forms of eye disease at one of the top ophthalmology hospitals and its network of clinicians and scientists.

Reconciling economic efficiency, R&D excellence and patient well-being

Building on its expertise and international reputation acquired in the service of the major pharmaceutical groups, Iris Pharma is expert at managing the entire continuum of ophthalmic drugs development.

Iris Pharma has also heavily invested in research programs targeting breakthrough innovations (Age-Related Macular Degeneration (ARMD), retinitis linked to diabetes, etc.). It will continue to pursue this goal by taking part in the steering committee of the Institut de la Vision, which will define the strategic lines of research.

However important the economic factors of our activity may be, the end goal remains above all making treatments available for the well-being of patients," explains Dr. Elena. “This is what really underlies our partnership with the teams of the Institut de la Vision. The prospects for treatment that are made possible by our research are fascinating, since they hold out the promise of transforming the lives of patients with eye diseases in a very short timeframe."
About Iris Pharma:

Iris Pharma is an independent French CRO that specializes in preclinical and clinical research in the field of ophthalmology, and is based in the Nice region. Founded in 1989 by Dr Pierre-Paul Elena, Iris Pharma offers its services and expertise in the development of ophthalmic drugs and ocular medical devices to the pharmaceutical industry, biotechnology companies, and research institutes around the world. The company has five main areas of activity: bio-analysis, pre-formulation, preclinical studies and services, clinical trials (Phase I and IV and medico-marketing surveys) and strategic consulting.
Recognized for the rigor and quality of its research, Iris Pharma has been chosen by the European Vision Institute (EVI.CT.SE) as an independent expert in Good Clinical Practice (GCP) for ophthalmic research. Since 1995, Iris Pharma has been recognized by the AFSSAPS (French Drug  Agency) as a laboratory that complies with Good Laboratory Practice (GLP).
In 2008, Iris Pharma took on six new employees, bringing its headcount up to 50. Its ongoing projects make it a major figure in the development of the local economy.
For further information: http://www.iris-pharma.com


About the Institut de la Vision: 

The Institut de la Vision is one of Europe’s largest research centers dedicated exclusively to vision (Inserm center / Paris VI). Opened in March 2008 in the Centre Hospitalier National d'Ophtalmologie (CHNO) des Quinze-Vingts, in Paris, it encompasses a biomedical research center (divided into four departments: Developmental Biology, Genetics, Low-Level Vision, Therapy), the Clinical Research Center of the CHNO des Quinze-Vingts (phase I to III clinical trials according to Good Clinical Practice (GCP) and the guidelines in force) and a dozen major industrialists (Essilor, Thea, Fovea Pharma, Horus Pharma, Visiotact, IMI, Iris Pharma, Ardoyset).
For further information: http://www.institut-vision.org


 
Iris Pharma Contact
Les Nertières - Allée Hector Pintus - 06610 La Gaude - France
Tél.: +33 4 93 59 49 59 - Fax: +33 4 93 59 49 50
e-mail: s.chiabaut@iris-pharma.com - website: http://www.iris-pharma.com

Media Contact
Agence Yucatan - Annie-Florence Loyer
Tél. : +33 1 53 63 27 29 - Email : afloyer@yucatan.tm.fr

Institut de la Vision Contact
e-mail: peggychambaz@gmail.com - website: http://www.institut-vision.org

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