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Ocular Gene Therapy Case Study – Novartis

Novartis required a VR simulation that accurately replicated and guided healthcare professionals through the administration of their novel ocular gene therapy. We created a haptic simulation for their sub-retinal injection of this therapy, which has been informed by several leading KOLs. This is an incredibly exciting medical education tool for surgeons to train on.

Background

Novartis had a challenging requirement to develop a VR simulation that accurately replicated and guided healthcare professionals through the administration of their novel ocular gene therapy. We created a haptic-enabled simulation for their sub-retinal injection, which has been informed by several leading KOLs. This is an incredibly exciting medical education tool for surgeons to train on sub-retinal injection for gene therapy.

Novartis Case Study

The Business Challenge

Novartis expanded their training program by using our novel method of medical education. Fundamental Surgery’s new way of training and accelerating skills transfer, for their hard to administer ocular gene therapy drug, was integrated into their medical education program for treating patients with inherited retinal dystrophies. Social distancing and pandemic-related issues had added further complications and put face-to-face training programs at risk.

The Fundamental Surgery platform was configured in conjunction with Novartis’ key opinion leaders. The resulting dual-user VR system employed our latest HapticVR™ technology, creating the precise sense of touch required for this intricate sub-retinal procedure. This allowed consultant level ophthalmic surgeons to acquire the necessary skills transfer.

Results

Our VR surgical simulation of the application of treatment provides an accurate, easily accessible, and cost-effective alternative to existing education modalities. Due to the centralized and cloud-hosted nature of the Fundamental Surgery platform, on-going feedback and training requirements from KOLs are able to be incorporated and delivered back out seamlessly. Fundamental Surgery can effectively improve the education of surgeons in the delivery of ocular gene therapies. Despite initial complications as a result of COVID-19 measures, training has been unhindered, with remote training events being delivered globally using the platform.

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