Bionic Eye Powered by Light Coming Soon to Help Visually Impaired to See

by Thilaka Ravi on  May 16, 2012 at 10:17 AM Research News
RSS Email Print This Page Comment bookmark
Font : A-A+

A retinal implant or bionic eye, which is powered by light and may help visually impaired to see has been developed by scientists.

Implants presently used in patients are required to be powered by a battery.
 Bionic Eye Powered by Light Coming Soon to Help Visually Impaired to See
Bionic Eye Powered by Light Coming Soon to Help Visually Impaired to See

The new device invented by scientists at Stanford University in California uses a special pair of glasses to beam near infrared light into the eye.

This powers the implant and sends the information, which could help a patient see, the BBC reported.

Diseases like age-related macular degeneration and retinal pigmentosa result in the death of cells that can detect light in the eye.

Sooner or later, this leads to blindness.

Retinal implants stimulate the nerves in the back of the eye, which has helped a few patients to see.

Early results of a trial in the UK show that two men have gone from being totally blind to being able to perceive light and even some shapes.

However, apart from a fitting a chip behind the retina, a battery needs to be fitted behind the ear and a cable needs to join the two together.

Prof Robert MacLaren from Oxford Eye Hospital shed light on how a bionic eye implant works.

The Stanford researchers insisted that their method could be a step forward by "eliminating the need for complex electronics and wiring".

A retinal implant, which works in a similar manner as a solar panel, is fitted at the back of the eye.

A pair of glasses fitted with a video camera records what is happening before a patient's eyes and fires beams of near infrared light on to the retinal chip.

This creates an electrical signal, which is passed on to nerves.

Natural light is 1,000 times weaker to power the implant.

"Because the photovoltaic implant is thin and wireless, the surgical procedure is much simpler than in other retinal prosthetic approaches," the researchers said.

"Such a fully integrated wireless implant promises the restoration of useful vision to patients blinded by degenerative retinal diseases."

The implant has not been tested in people yet, but has been shown to work in rats.

The new devise has been described in the journal Nature Photonics.

Source: ANI

Post a Comment

Comments should be on the topic and should not be abusive. The editorial team reserves the right to review and moderate the comments posted on the site.
Notify me when reply is posted
I agree to the terms and conditions

More News on:

Eye Vision LASIK Surgery Facts Allergy Eye Drops Routine Eye Examination Quiz On Eye Donation Floppy Iris Syndrome Eyelid Bump 

News A - Z


News Search

Medindia Newsletters

Subscribe to our Free Newsletters!

Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.

Find a Doctor

Stay Connected

  • Available on the Android Market
  • Available on the App Store

News Category

News Archive