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The Power List 2020 – Power List

Luis Iglesias

President and Head of Santen EMEA

How is Santen addressing the biggest unmet needs in ophthalmology?

The prevalence of eye disease is on the rise, due to the worldwide trend of ageing populations and factors attributed to modern lifestyles, such as increased use of screens. We are committed to protecting and preserving the precious sense of sight. But we are also aware that healthcare budgets are increasingly stretched, making it critical for us to illustrate that benefits seen from our clinical trials are replicated in the daily lives of patients so that funds are well spent on treatments. Patient access to treatments is paramount, so we’re investing in real-world evidence studies to better understand the effectiveness and tolerability of treatments in the real-life setting.

What is the most exciting project Santen is working on?

As a specialised, global company in ophthalmology, we are constantly investigating how to advance, adapt and create technologies that benefit the eye health community.

We have recently established a number of exciting strategic partnerships. Santen is now the sole ophthalmology partner of the International Telecommunication Union, (a UN agency), WHO-led Be He@lthy, Be Mobile (BHBM) initiative, to drive implementation of national health programmes and raise awareness of non-communicable diseases in ophthalmology such as glaucoma, dry eye and cataract.

Our new joint venture with Verily, the life sciences and healthcare ‘sister company to Google’, is allowing us to work on developing unique and scalable software-based devices using artificial intelligence and microelectronics.

What should we expect from Santen over the next five years?

Santen has 130 years of heritage in ophthalmology, and is the only global company with this sole focus. We have the expertise and resources to explore rare diseases and under-resourced areas in ophthalmology, and we are deeply involved in a number of ongoing, early-stage research projects at the forefront of medical science. For example, our collaboration with Oxford Biomedica is focused on researching and developing gene therapy products for the treatment of inherited retinal diseases – diseases that disproportionally affect children and young adults, resulting in vision loss or blindness. We look forward to bringing this innovation, amongst others, to physicians and patients in the coming years.

Date of preparation: February 2021
Job code: NP-No product-EMEA-0097

Part of the Power List 2020

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From ocular oncology to tackling neglected diseases, our 2020 Power Listers are making their mark on ophthalmology – and beyond.

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