Recent Press Releases and Upcoming Events:
FORT COLLINS, COLO. (1/26/16) - Optibrand, Ltd. LLC
Optibrand Announces Biotechnology License Agreement
Optibrand Ltd., LLC announced the signing of a global licensing agreement regarding the use of Optibrand’s patented RetCheck™ Technology software with Volk Optical, Inc. The RetCheck software is a key component of Volk’s iPhone® based retinal imaging camera sold under the tradename Volk iNview™ which was launched at the recently concluded American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) meeting in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Optibrand is a Ft. Collins, Colorado based retinal imaging software development company that focuses the majority of its resources on development of innovative software solutions for the optical diagnostic market.
Volk Optical, Inc. is located in Mentor, Ohio, distributes its products in over 100 countries and is the global leader in the handheld retinal imaging lens market.
“With the introduction of more powerful smartphones, our RetCheck software has enabled Optibrand to create an easy to use, low cost retinal imaging option for eye care professionals around the world. Volk’s global presence makes them an ideal partner to commercialize our unique automatic retinal capture technology” says Joe Ritter, CEO of Optibrand.
The availability and capabilities of more powerful smartphones has allowed for a myriad of medical diagnostic applications to be added to the phones allowing for more widespread and more economical ways to deliver healthcare around the world. Using these phones to image retinas of people as part of a complete eye examination fulfills a much needed service. As part of the eye examination, a video of the retina is conducted with Optibrand’s software automatically extracting in real time from the video stream the best retinal images it detects that can then be used for diagnostic evaluation. The extracted images can then be viewed immediately, stored in the patient record or transmitted via the internet to another location for evaluation.
“The smartphone has created a new way of delivering healthcare to patients. By utilizing a smartphone, the portable handheld retinal image field is going to be a tremendous market not only in lesser economically developed markets but also in developed markets such as the U.S.,” Ritter said. “People talk a lot about the need to lower the cost of health care. Identifying many more people earlier that have retinal disease will lead to earlier intervention and more successful outcomes. That’s what the software can do.”
While Optibrand views Volk as an excellent partner, the company is investigating opportunities with other interested parties. “There are lots of companies out there that are trying to utilize the smartphone as a way to image retinas – our software enhances that process and makes it very easy to accomplish.”
Optibrand believes an additional opportunity exists with the RetCheck software to be used with a device for the screening of newborn and infant children for the presence of retinal abnormalities. Sometimes children are born with retinal abnormalities and the sooner these abnormalities are detected the better the chance of a successful treatment outcome without irreversible change to vision. Newborn retinal screening is not routinely done because it is too difficult to capture good images from this non-command responsive aged patient. The auto-capture feature of the software overcomes this hurdle.
For more information about Optibrand and RetCheck please visit their website at www.optibrand.com.
For more information on the Volk iNview™ device and Volk please visit their website at www.volk.com.
FORT COLLINS, COLO. (1/5/2016) – InnovatioNews, By Steve Porter
Optibrand’s innovative patented biomedical software enables smartphones to help prevent human blindness and detect disease via telemedicine
FORT COLLINS -- A Fort Collins, Colorado-based company is seeing a biomedical market opportunity for its newly patented retinal imaging software that functions in a smartphone-based system to help prevent blindness and detect disease in humans around the world.
This new human software has been trademarked as RetCheck™ Technology.
One of the groups Optibrand is working with is PEEK Vision, a UK-based organization associated with the London School of Tropical Medicine & Hygiene that has focused much of its efforts on the delivery of quality eye care in Africa where blindness is a major concern and up to 80% is preventable.
The PEEK organization has developed the PEEK device – Portable Eye Examination Kit -- which is a Galaxy or Sony smartphone that holds a complete eye examination that an operator can administer to a patient in the field anywhere in the world. The results of the eye examination can then be transmitted, if necessary, via telemedicine to distant locations for professional evaluation.
Part of the eye examination includes a retinal evaluation using the smartphone’s video camera. As the video of the retina is being conducted, Optibrand’s software automatically extracts from the video stream in real-time the best retinal images it detects that can then be used for diagnostic evaluation.
Optibrand and PEEK Vision met at an international eye conference in May 2014 and both realized they had the potential for great synergies.
Joe Ritter, Optibrand CEO and board chair, said the company had been developing auto-capture software as a biomedical application with human retinas for a couple of years before meeting with PEEK.
“When Dave Henriksen, who is the chief designer of the Optibrand retinal capture software, and I met with two of the founders of PEEK, we all realized that our software could overcome the last hurdle PEEK was facing in providing a complete eye care examination. Our software is able to automatically extract the single-best quality images it detects from a real-time video camera preview and then create a panorama of the retina that can easily be sent via telemedicine to distant locations.
“Dave has created software to perform with human retinal image previews and added to that the ability of the software to stitch together the various captured retinal images into a single, wide field of view panorama image of the retina that can indicate the presence of primary eye abnormalities or other secondary retinopathies caused by systemic disease,” Ritter said.
“Basically, what our software does is look for the perfect images in the live video preview that would be useful for diagnostic purposes and extract them,” said Henriksen.
Retinas are connected directly to the brain and -- by viewing retinal images -- can show eye problems that could lead to blindness and also indicate other possible systemic disease conditions.
“The retina is really a window into the body to indicate not only primary disease but also secondary disease caused by systemic conditions,” Ritter said.
Ritter said PEEK has concluded a crowdfunding campaign to help it become a commercial organization that can affordably manufacture and offer the PEEK kits to customers.
“We’re enabling their software to be more effective,” said Henriksen. “It seemed like a very good marriage of our software technology and PEEK’s smartphone innovations.”
Henriksen spent a week in Tanzania tweaking Optibrand’s software on the PEEK device. Some additional development work has just been finished that enables the software to perform on the latest Galaxy and Sony smartphones. Most likely, Optibrand said it will offer an app on the Google Play store that a PEEK device user could download for use.
Ritter said he sees a big demand for their app from PEEK users and others.
“The smartphone has created a new way of delivering healthcare to patients,” he said. “By utilizing a smartphone, the portable, handheld retinal image field is going to be a tremendous market not only in lesser economically developed markets but also in developed markets such as the U.S.
“People talk a lot about lowering the cost of health care and identifying people with health problems, and that’s what this can do.”
While Ritter said he expects Optibrand to develop a strong partnership with PEEK, there are other companies he is talking to about deploying the software on their devices. “(Our) software automates the image capture process, which opens up opportunities for use in a variety of device configurations.”
Another potential application for human retinal imaging is in the pediatric arena for newborn babies, Ritter noted.
“We’ve got optometrists pushing for newborn eye examinations,” he said. “Babies are sometimes born with genetic or other types of retinal abnormalities, and the sooner they’re identified the better the chances of a successful treatment outcome.
“Because it is so difficult to perform a retinal exam on newborns and infants, they are not routinely done. Having a low-cost, handheld smartphone device with an automated process could change the playing field. It’s not a market now, but as eye professionals become aware of what the technology can do, I think they will see the merits for earlier examinations.”
(Jan 2016) – Cataract & Refractive Surgery Today (Vol 16, No1)
Volk® iNviewTM Captures Wide-Angle Retinal Images With AppleTM Devices
Volk Optical's iNview used AppleTM devices to acquire wide-angle digital color fundus images, according to a company news release. The indirect ophthalmoscopic lens attachment is compatible with the iPhone and ipod and works in conjunction with the free Volk iNview app to take retinal images for general visualization, patient education, referrals, and record retention.
The Volk iNview is reportedly the first Apple-compatible fundus imaging device to overcome the challenges similar instruments have failed to address, which include field of view, ease of image capture, and optical quality. Designed for use with dilated pupils, Volk iNview provides a static 50 degree field of view with dynamic peripheral retina views out to 80 degrees. The device offers both manual capture and a convenient auto capture feature. In auto capture, the app takes a rapid series of images and runs a proprietary algorithm to present a collection of the best-focused and defined images for review. The device's customized double-aspheric glass optic is optimized for use with Apple devices' native cameras. Combining this premium optic technology with the app results in the best possible image quality from a mobile device, according to Volk.
The resulting images can be immediately reviewed onscreen with patients for educational and treatment plan discussions, appended to medical records for documentation, or forwarded as supplemental information with referrals. application data are securely encrypted with a user-defined password key, ensuring HIPPA-compliant patient data integrity and security. the JPEG format images can be exported to a Mac or PC using the native iOS functionality. The Volk iNview is available in iPhone 5s, 6 and 6s and iPod Touch (Gen 6) models. A package system that comes with a dedicated iPod is also available from Volk for users who prefer not to use their personal iPhone in practice.
(Optibrand's RetCheck technology is a key component of the iNview device.)
FORT COLLINS, COLO. (12/11/2014) - Optibrand, Ltd. LLC
Peek Vision and
Optibrand Ltd., LLC collaborate to offer new hope for tackling global blindness
The team behind Peek, the Portable Eye Examination Kit, and Optibrand Ltd., LLC have announced a collaboration as part of the solution to preventing avoidable blindness by increasing access to potentially life-changing new eye health testing equipment.
Peek consists of smartphone apps and an adapter which can be used by health workers anywhere in the world to test eyes easily and affordably in the community. This is especially important as millions of people around the world are not able to get to clinics or hospitals to seek help.
Nearly all of the tools are being developed as a collaboration between the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, the University of Strathclyde and the NHS Glasgow Centre for Ophthalmic Research, pooling their complementary expertise in international eye health, biomedical engineering and ophthalmic research.
Their latest creation, which was announced on November 26, is called Peek Retina, a smartphone adapter engineered at the University of Strathclyde and NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde which clips over the phone’s camera and enables health workers to see inside the eye with the video camera on the smart phone. Many eye diseases and other health problems, such as diabetes and high blood pressure, can be detected with a good view of the retina.
The team at Optibrand has always been involved in the development of software that automatically focuses on and automatically captures the best single retinal images it detects from a video stream. More recently, its RetCheck™ Technology software has the added capability to stitch the images together into a single, wide field of view panorama image all done in real time.
When combined with the Peek and Peek Retina, the RetCheck Technology is able to automatically save the best retinal photos and then send them to experts for diagnosis and subsequent treatment.
Millions of people worldwide are blind, and 80% of all blind people have needlessly lost their sight through preventable or treatable conditions. With so much avoidable vision loss occurring, the Peek team shares a passion for developing affordable, portable and easy-to-use tools to reach the people who need eye care most.
Peek was formed after co-founder Dr Andrew Bastawrous experienced a logistical nightmare trying to transport bulky eye equipment to remote areas in Kenya during a community study as part of his PhD at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine. He was convinced there must be a better way and turned his attention to the potential power of smartphones, teaming up with his fellow Peek co-founders, Stewart Jordan, Dr Mario Giardini and Dr Iain Livingstone, to make the idea a reality.
Dr Bastawrous, who is a Clinical Lecturer and ophthalmologist within the International Centre for Eye Health at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, said: “With Peek we are hoping to increase the access to eye care to the millions of people who are blind and shouldn’t be. For this to be a success we need to find a sustainable way of sharing the technology as far and wide as possible.”
Optibrand was founded in 1998 and has always been involved in retinal imaging software development. It has developed patented software for use with retinal video cameras that automatically focuses and captures the best retinal images the software detects. Two patents have been issued regarding its technology and in December 2013, the company filed for its third patent regarding the building of a real time, wide field of view, retinal panorama image.
Joe Ritter, CEO and Chairman of the Board of Optibrand said, “Peek is known throughout the world for its commitment to providing affordable eye care to the global community, especially those living in middle to lower income countries, and has made great strides in achieving that. They provide Optibrand with a great platform to contribute to that commitment and we are honored to do so.”
Peek is a Portable Eye Examination Kit that uses smartphones to test eyes easily and affordably anywhere in the world. It has been developed through a collaboration between the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, the University of Strathclyde and the NHS Glasgow Centre for Ophthalmic Research. Peek tackles avoidable blindness by increasing access to high-quality eye care. www.peekvision.org
Optibrand is a privately held limited liability company based in Ft. Collins, CO. USA. It is a software technology development company that has always focused its resources on the creation of software to automatically capture the best quality and most appropriate retinal images from a video stream. Its RetCheck Technology has been adapted to perform on iPhones, Galaxy devices, and a variety of ophthalmic retinal cameras. For more information about Optibrand, please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or go to www.optibrand.com.
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