News Feature | February 21, 2014

Moran Eye Center Partners With Drug Company Allergan Inc.

Request Information

By Marcus Johnson

The Moran Eye Center, which operates as part of the University of Utah, has announced that it will enter into a partnership with pharmaceutical giant Allergan, based out of California. The two parties are coming together in order to research and ultimately develop a drug that treats age-related blindness caused from macular degeneration. The agreement will provide researchers at the Moran Eye Center with funds in order to study potential treatments. Moran Eye Center CEO Randall Olson has called the research potentially “historic.”

“I don’t think there’s anything quite like this anywhere in academia, where the two are teamed together where they’re literally seamless," Olson said. While the university already brings in more private money than average, pharmaceutical companies typically are not involved into a product is already in the clinical stage. “Much of the system in trying to take revolutionary breakthroughs in science all the way through the pathway out to clinical care was a very disjointed, dysfunctional process. Not only did it take an inordinate amount of time and an enormous waste of resources, but many great ideas that really could have helped never make it."

The partnership is reported to be for 5 years and information and resources are expected to flow freely from both sides. Allergan scientists will be working with Moran Eye Center researchers as well. Olson hopes that Allergan’s resources can help produce a viable drug. “They have access to resources we can’t even dream of," Olson said.