Novel multifunctional biomedical materials are discussed, capable for the integration of optical functionality and exploiting the correlation of structure and function. Therefore, volume holographic structuring can be applied for the integration of three-dimensional optical structures with specific functionality in terms of diffractive properties. The strategy to combine optical structuring of the volume and specific modification of the surface is particularly discussed for the design of advanced intra-ocular lens implants. Based on a multifunctional biomedical material with integrated optical functionality and operating by the principle ‘function by structure’, such a new type of intraocular lens is expected to attain enhanced functionality.
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