Novartis hopes to commercialise "smart lens" within 5 years

ZURICH, July 15 Tue Jul 15, 2014 5:13am EDT

ZURICH, July 15 (Reuters) - Novartis expects the "smart lens" technology it has licensed from Google will take several years to develop, but hopes to have a product ready for market in about five years, the drugmaker's chief executive said on Tuesday.

"This isn't going to happen overnight because it's a breakthrough technology. It's not months, we're probably talking about years. We would hope to be able to commercialise within about five years," Joe Jimenez told Reuters in an interview.

Novartis said earlier on Tuesday it had struck an agreement with Google to develop "smart lens" technology for medical use in the eye. (Reporting by Caroline Copley and Paul Arnold.)