Healthcare Industry News:  Glaucoma 

Biopharmaceuticals Ophthalmology

 News Release - February 9, 2006

Bausch & Lomb Teams with Novartis Ophthalmics To Co-Promote Bausch & Lomb Retisert(TM)

ROCHESTER, N.Y.--(HSMN NewsFeed)--Feb. 9, 2006--Bausch & Lomb (NYSE:BOL ) and Novartis Ophthalmics, a business unit of Novartis Pharmaceutical Corp. (NYSE: NVS ), will co-promote Bausch & Lomb's patented orphan drug Retisert(TM) (fluocinolone acetonide intravitreal implant) 0.59 mg, in the United States. Retisert is indicated for the treatment of chronic noninfectious posterior segment uveitis.

Under the terms of the agreement, the Novartis retinal sales team will promote the Bausch & Lomb Retisert product to its network of retinal specialists in the United States, supplementing the efforts of Bausch & Lomb's U.S. pharmaceutical sales representatives. Bausch & Lomb remains responsible for Retisert marketing and product strategy.

Bausch & Lomb's Retisert is the world's first intravitreal drug implant for the treatment of chronic noninfectious posterior segment uveitis, a devastating and often blinding condition that afflicts approximately 175,000 people in the United States. Approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Bausch & Lomb launched Retisert in the U.S. in July 2005.

"Our collaboration with Novartis Ophthalmics will provide an expanded nationwide sales force, allowing more rapid distribution of this innovative technology to retinal specialists and their patients who are suffering from posterior segment uveitis," said Michael J. O'Rourke, vice president and general manager of Bausch & Lomb's U.S. Pharmaceuticals business. "Novartis has an extensive physician-specialist network in place for its VisudyneŽ (verteporfin for injection) therapy for the predominantly classic wet form of age-related macular degeneration, and we believe that both companies can benefit from the synergies inherent in this co-promotion agreement for Retisert."

Further details of the agreement are confidential.

Bausch & Lomb is the eye health company, dedicated to perfecting vision and enhancing life for consumers around the world. Its core businesses include soft and rigid gas permeable contact lenses and lens care products, and ophthalmic surgical and pharmaceutical products. The Bausch & Lomb name is one of the best known and most respected healthcare brands in the world. Founded in 1853, the Company is headquartered in Rochester, New York. Bausch & Lomb's 2004 revenues were $2.2 billion; it employs approximately 13,700 people worldwide and its products are available in more than 100 countries. More information about the Company can be found on the Bausch & Lomb Web site at Copyright Bausch & Lomb Incorporated.

With US headquarters in East Hanover, N.J. and worldwide headquarters in Basel, Switzerland, the Novartis Ophthalmics Business Unit of Novartis AG is a global leader in research, development and manufacturing of leading ophthalmic pharmaceuticals that assist in the treatment of age-related macular degeneration, eye inflammation, Glaucoma, ocular allergies and other diseases and disorders of the eye. Novartis Ophthalmics products are available in more than 110 different countries. Novartis Ophthalmics products are made in Switzerland, France the United States and Canada. For more information, visit

Retisert is a trademark of Bausch & Lomb Incorporated.

Visudyne (verteporfin for injection) is a registered trademark of Novartis.

Source: Bausch & Lomb

Issuer of this News Release is solely responsible for its content.
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