Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Retinal Implant 'Enables Blind People To See'

Researchers in Germany have developed a retinal implant that has allowed three blind people to see shapes and objects within days of the implant being installed. Impressively, one blind person was able to identify and find objects placed on a table in front of him, as well as walking around a room independently and approaching people, reading a clock face and differentiating seven shades of grey. The research is published in Proceedings of the Royal Society B.

The device, which has been developed by the company Retinal Implant AG together with the Institute for Ophthalmic Research at the University of Tuebingen, represents an unprecedented advance in electronic visual prostheses and could eventually revolutionise the lives of up 200,000 people worldwide who suffer from blindness as a result of retinitis pigmentosa, a degenerative eye disease.

In this disease light receptors in the eye cease to function. Writing in Proceedings of the Royal Society B, Prof. Dr. Eberhart Zrenner (founding Director of Retinal Implant AG and Director and Chairman of the University of Tuebingen Eye Hospital) states that "The results of this pilot study provide strong evidence that the visual functions of patients blinded by a hereditary retinal dystrophy can, in principle, be restored to a degree sufficient for use in daily life."


Source and More:
http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/206415.php

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