Bausch + Lomb buys cataract lens maker AcuFocus

Bausch + Lomb is building out its portfolio of intraocular lenses for people with cataracts, with the acquisition of AcuFocus and its replacement implant designed to offer an extended depth of field.

AcuFocus obtained FDA approval for its IC-8 Apthera lens in July 2022. Using a small aperture, the intraocular lens filters out unfocused light entering the eye from around its periphery, funneling focused images toward the retina.

In the deal’s announcement, Bausch + Lomb said the approach can offer clear vision at a distance as well as the ability to correct for farsightedness, compared to monofocal implants. The financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

“Cataracts are the largest contributor to global blindness in adults aged 50 years and older, with more than 15 million individuals, or approximately 45 percent of the more than 33 million cases of global blindness,” Bausch + Lomb CEO Joseph Papa said in a release, describing the field as a strategic area of focus for the company. 

AcuFocus has estimated that the approval of its lens—for people up to a certain level of astigmatism, or 1.5 diopters—would cover about 82% of patients with cataracts.

The IC-8 lens previously received a CE mark approval in Europe in 2015, and it has also been available in Australia, New Zealand and Singapore. AcuFocus announced it had begun performing its first U.S. surgeries with the lens earlier this month, as part of a limited commercial release before a nationwide rollout slated for the second quarter of this year.

The IC-8 will join Bausch + Lomb’s portfolio of intraocular implants, which includes astigmatism- and presbyopia-correcting lenses, as well as a pipeline developing extended-range and trifocal lenses scheduled for launch within the next two to three years.