IMI Intelligent Medical Implants, a developer of opthalmic systems, has named veteran life sciences executive Robert J Rosenthal as chief executive officer. The company also reported that its Intelligent Retinal Implant System (IRIS) is in clinical development.
Dr Rosenthal is also a member of the IMI board of directors. He has more than 20 years of experience fostering product innovation and building value for customers, shareholders, and employees. Most recently, he was president and CEO of Magellan Biosciences, an emerging provider in clinical diagnostic products.
Dr Rosenthal also serves on the board of Primera Dx, a molecular-diagnostics company based in Mansfield, Massachusetts, and he is a member of the University of Maryland Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry Board of Advisors.
According to the company, the IRIS process has shown promise in expediting and optimizing visual perception as the patient learns to see again. Another benefit over other implantable devices is that the IMI Retinal Stimulator can be easily upgraded with a next-generation device as sensor technology advances: the detachable IMI unit clips onto a special tack that is implanted in the back of the eye, expediting device removal and replacement.
Vincent Bucci, chairman of IMI, said: “Bob has held senior executive roles at public and private technology-based companies large and small. The common thread across Bob’s career to date is a compelling track record of leadership and success. He knows what it takes to motivate and inspire a multidisciplinary team and turn a good, innovative idea into a breakthrough product that is ready for and accepted by the market.
“From a keen understanding of the technology in IMI’s case, a complex amalgamation of medical engineering, biology, neurology, and IT to strong organizational development, financial management, and regulatory experience, Bob has the skills and knowhow we need to take the company from development to commercial stage.”
Dr Rosenthal said: “The IMI technology clearly holds tremendous promise but that alone won’t make a successful product. I’ve had the great privilege over the past months to participate in a comprehensive review of the Intelligent Retinal Implant System meeting with IMI scientists, as well as many of the researchers, neuro-ophthalmologists, and surgeons at partner clinics across Europe. What convinced me to join IMI was the passion of the entire team.
“These physicians and engineers come to work every day dedicated to pioneering the breakthroughs in technology and medicine to restore sight and make a significant difference in patients’ lives. I’m inspired to join them and help IMI fulfill its mission and achieve its goals.”