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Argentis to market dry eye treatment patented by Southern College of Optometry.

Argentis, LLC (Memphis, TN) has signed a licensure agreement with Southern College of Optometry (Memphis, TN) for the worldwide rights to market an eye cream created by Charles Connor, OD, PhD, Professor and Director of Research Programs at SCO and Charles Haine, OD, SCO Vice President for Academic Affairs.

The agreement marks the culmination of a decade of research by Dr. Connor into relief for women who struggle with the irritating effects of dry eye syndrome, a chronic condition affecting as many as nine million older American women.

"The more we learned about dry eye syndrome and Dr. Connor and Dr. Haine's research, we at Argentis became believers in the potential for the treatment that he developed," said Argentis President and CEO Tom Davis about the decision to pursue United States marketing approval for SCO's patented treatment.

Under the licensure agreement signed between SCO and Argentis, the company will further develop and seek United States marketing approval for the dry eye treatment, the technical working name for which is T4DE.

The product will be intended to treat dry eye syndrome in post-menopausal women, as well as in women who take birth control pills, a side effect of which can include dry eye syndrome. The eye cream also will be intended to treat women who stop wearing their contact lenses because of dry eye syndrome.

Current treatments for dry eye syndrome are limited to eye drops, synthetic tears, punctal plugs, dietary changes and a prescription medication that treats eye inflammation.

With an aging baby boom population, Argentis believes the eye cream may appeal to millions of women.

"There is a significant untapped market for a product that can both negate the impact of birth control pills on the eye and allow the user to regain eye comfort and return to regular contact lens use," Davis said.

The product's formula is covered by United States Patent 6,659,985 and licensed to Argentis under the agreement. The company intends to submit an investigational new drug application (IND) to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and begin clinical studies this year. Based on FDA's past acceptance of INDs involving higher doses of testosterone, the company anticipates no objections from the FDA.

"SCO is pleased that Argentis has agreed to continue development of this product in order to obtain market approval in the United States" said SCO President Dr. William E. Cochran.

Argentis, LLC is a Tennessee Limited Liability Company formed to develop, distribute and market health care products, including the testosterone cream developed by Southern College of Optometry. Based in the heart of the biomedical research district in Memphis, Tennessee, the company is led by CEO and President Tom Davis. Chief Administrative Officer and Secretary is Ted Townsend.

Southern College of Optometry is an independent, not-for-profit institution of higher education with a mission to educate men and women in the art and science of optometry. An SCO faculty member since 1988, Dr. Charles Connor, Director of Research Programs, earned his PhD from Temple University and his doctor of optometry degree from the University of Houston. Dr. Charles Haine, Professor, earned his masters and doctor of optometry degree from Indiana University.

Argentis, LLC

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Publication:BIOTECH Patent News
Date:Mar 1, 2006
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