International experts have developed a prosthetic retina
A REVOLUTIONARY device that could restore sight to patients with one of the most common causes of blindness has shown “encouraging” results, according to research.
The Star Trek-style device electrically stimulates the neurons in the retina left relatively unscathed by the effects of AMD.
An infrared beam is then projected through the eye and transmits information.
The tiny implant does not require any wires and is easy to fit, the scientists said.
Initial laboratory tests have been “encouraging”, according to the research published in the journal Nature Photonics.
The device appears similar to the futuristic headgear worn by Star Trek’s Lieutenant Commander Geordi La Forge, who is blind but is able to see using a visor-like attachment.
AMD affects a quarter of over-60s in the UK and more than half of over-75s and the number of sufferers is expected to treble in the next 25 years as the population ages.
But there are still few treatments – and no cure – for the condition. It is caused by the deterioration of the cells in the macula, the part of the retina used to see straight ahead, robbing sufferers of their central vision.