The intraocular lens manufacturer Calhoun Vision, Inc. was founded in 1997 by Daniel Schwartz, an ophthalmologist from the University of California and two scientists (from the California Institute of Technology), Professor Robert Grubbs (2005 Nobel Prize Winner) and Julia Kornfield. They conceived the idea of Light-Adjustable Lenses: that the dioptric power of intraocular lenses could be changed after they are implanted in the eye in a painless and non-invasive way through the application of light.
Initially Calhoun Vision focused on the vision obtained after cataract surgery. With approximately 20 million operations a year, surgeons sometimes encountered the problem of a residual refractive error after the operation. Faced with demanding patients as regards quality of vision after the operation, Calhoun saw an opportunity to create a lens whose refraction could be modified a posteriori and thereby reduce patients’ dependency on spectacles.
Over the years, the founding team has been able to grow with the addition of highly talented scientists in the fields of materials and optics. In addition, private investors have seen immense potential in this concept, providing the necessary support for the company’s developments.
So in 2008, after 10 years of hard work in the laboratory and clinical studies on hundreds of patients, its “Light Adjustable Lens” (LAL) product was finally launched on to the market in countries of the European Union.