Germany-based medical equipment maker ZEISS Medical Technology and pharmaceutical company Boehringer Ingelheim have announced a long-term strategic collaboration focused on eye diseases.

Under the collaboration, ZEISS and Boehringer Ingelheim will develop predictive analytics that facilitate early detection and prevent vision loss for people with serious eye diseases.

The two companies will leverage their expertise in ophthalmological technology, data analytics, algorithms, and treatments to detect early and treat retinal diseases before irreversible vision loss.

ZEISS Medical Technology digital business unit and ophthalmology strategic business unit head Euan S Thomson said: “At ZEISS, we have long understood that where collaboration thrives, innovation emerges.

“With our announcement today with Boehringer Ingelheim, we’re building on our strategy to innovate through partnerships in order to make breakthrough discoveries to combat vision loss and improve people’s lives.”

ZEISS has decades of medical expertise, which forms the base for its ZEISS Medical Ecosystem and its digitally connected workflows.

Its connected and secure architecture integrates diagnostic and therapeutic devices supported by a cloud-based platform, which can harness data aggregation, automation and AI analytics.

The partnership will identify the markers of early stages of retinal diseases, using ZEISS’ cloud-connected devices and AI-assisted analysis of its large-volume image data sets.

The approach will provide a basis for clinical studies for the development of more personalised and specific treatments for the early stages of chronic retinal disease.

It will also support early detection of the disease to prevent vision loss.

Boehringer Ingelheim has a deep understanding of disease biology in retinal diseases and aims to enhance early detection and intervention to enable meaningful improvements for patients.

Over the past decade, the German drugmaker built a diverse pipeline focused on the preservation of vascular function, targeting inflammation and neuroprotection.

Boehringer Ingelheim retinal health head Ulrike Graefe-Mody said: “Our partnership with ZEISS will allow us to develop precision therapies delivering the right treatment for the right patient at the right time to prevent vision loss by intervening before irreversible damage occurs.

“It is part of our commitment to champion early detection and treatment and will contribute to transforming the lives of people with serious eye disease.”