A UK MedTech behind a sight-saving mask for diabetics has signed a multi-million-pound US deal.
Sedgefield-based PolyPhotonix has developed a patented non-invasive treatment for diabetic retinopathy.
It has entered a global strategic alliance with Prevail InfoWorks to lead management of FDA-regulated human clinical trials of its Noctura 400 Sleep Mask.
Prevail Partners, an affiliate of InfoWorks, has agreed to invest significantly in PolyPhotonix upon the commencement of the FDA clinical trial as lead investor in a $10m Series A investment round.
Successful completion of the FDA clinical trial will open the US market to the treatment.
The Noctura 400 Sleep Mask has the potential to treat and prevent diabetic retinopathy, a condition of diabetic patients that can lead to blindness. Diabetic retinopathy represents a significant burden of disease for both patients and healthcare systems globally and is a significant cause of blindness in the working age population.
Worn at night, the sleep mask treatment reduces and reverses the effects of diabetic retinopathy by delivering light therapy during a patient’s normal hours of sleep in a home-based setting. The Noctura 400 administers low-level light to reduce the risk of hypoxia and retinal damage in the diabetic patients’ eyes.
“Our new global strategic partnership with Prevail InfoWorks will be a valuable asset to our vital work in tackling diabetic retinopathy worldwide,” said PolyPhotonix CEO Richard Kirk.
“We are delighted to be working with such a major player in the industry and hope to break into the US market in the very near future.
“The investment and the forthcoming FDA trial will help support and develop the evidence base for Noctura 400’s clinical effectiveness for diabetic retinopathy patients at risk of losing their sight.
“This multi-million-pound deal will accelerate the clinical trial process and advance other indications in our biotechnology pipeline.
“At a time when health services across the globe are struggling to bounce back from the COVID-19 crisis, our sleep mask can be used by patients at home, reducing the pressure on frontline hospital services.”
Polyphotonix’s mask is already in use in Europe including the UK, France and Portugal.