Approximately 80% of all sensory input is received via the eyes, so suffering from chronic retinal diseases that lead to blindness causes a significant decrease in the quality of life (QOL). And because retinal diseases are most common among the elderly, developing pathological analyses and treatments for retinal diseases has become an urgent issue in super-aging countries such as Japan.
Although evaluation of drug candidates against retinal diseases has been done on animal models, serious concerns arise regarding the ethics and costs in addition to the limitations of translating data from animal models to clinical settings.
In vitro cell culture models, an alternative to animal models, enable researchers to investigate specific molecules-of-interest and simply recapitulate complex and chronic conditions. Although studies on organ-on-a-chip for drug discovery have recently been extensively carried out, the organ-on-a-chip approach that targets the ocular tissues has been rarely investigated.
A joint research team from the Graduate Schools of Engineering and Medicine at Tohoku University has recapitulated a pathological condition of retinal diseases on a chip. They first cultured human retinal cells and vascular endothelial cells, mimicking the outermost structure of the retina.
When retinal cells were exposed to hypoglycemic and hypoxic conditions after the cells had grown up, endothelial cells were found to migrate to the side of retinal cells to damage them. This process partially recapitulates neovascularization in wet-type age-related macular degeneration (AMD).
Learn more: Reproducing a retinal disease on a chip
The Latest on: Retinal disease on a chip
- New Hope for Blindness Cure on June 20, 2014 at 6:49 am
Once doomed to a life of darkness, dozens of people stricken by retinal diseases are rediscovering a world of light as scientists push ahead on cures for blindness ... The system is built around a chip implanted in the eye to mimic the function of ... […]
- Scientists Are Making Stunning Advances In Curing Blindness on June 19, 2014 at 11:50 pm
Once doomed to a life of darkness, dozens of people stricken by retinal diseases are rediscovering a world of light ... The system is built around a chip implanted in the eye to mimic the function of photoreceptor cells, typically combined with a miniature ... […]
- Retinal implants that give sight to the blind show some success in trials on February 21, 2013 at 4:22 am
German-designed implants aimed at restoring vision to patients blinded by retinal disease have succeeded in the second phase ... The device consists of a tiny light-sensitive chip measuring 3mm by 3mm (0.11 x 0.11 inches), which sends electrical signals ... […]
- Retinal implants clear new hurdle to reach second phase of trials on February 20, 2013 at 3:40 pm
GERMAN-designed implants aimed at restoring vision to patients blinded by retinal disease have succeeded in the second phase ... The device consists of a tiny light-sensitive chip measuring 3mm by 3mm, which sends electrical signals down the optic nerve ... […]
- FDA Approves First Retinal Implant on February 15, 2013 at 8:26 am
Second Sight plans to adapt its technology to someday assist people afflicted with age-related macular degeneration, a similar but more common disease ... the retina. The company’s technology is a three- by three-millimeter microelectronic chip (0.1 ... […]
- Lung-on-a-Chip Used to Model Human Disease on November 7, 2012 at 3:55 pm
we've gone from unveiling the initial design of the lung-on-a-chip to demonstrating its potential to model a complex human disease, which we believe provides a glimpse of what drug discovery and development might look like in the future." […]
- WHAT'S NEXT; A Chip That Mimics a Retina but Strains for Light on August 8, 2001 at 6:00 pm
The patients in the study suffer from retinitis pigmentosa, a disease that damages the photoreceptor cells in the eye, called rods and cones. The silicon chip, which is implanted just behind the retina, uses about 3,500 miniature light detectors attached ... […]
- Silicon Chip Takes Aim At Eye Disease on June 29, 2000 at 5:00 pm
The Optobionics chip is one of a handful of technologies being pursued by researchers to treat retinal diseases--the leading cause of untreatable blindness. Worldwide, 30 million people suffer from retinal disorders, including retinitis pigmentosa and age ... […]
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