(ORDO NEWS) — A group of American scientists have developed a new effective way to treat degenerative diseases of the retina. It involves the restoration of vision with the help of ultrasound.
A team of scientists led by Keef Zhou, professor of biomedical engineering and ophthalmology, and Mark S. Humayun, professor of ophthalmology and biomedical engineering at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles (USA), proposed a new method of treating eye diseases. In particular, degenerative diseases of the retina, due to which many people lose their sight.
This method involves the activation of retinal neurons (that is, the “circuits” associated with the brain) using ultrasound technology. In this way, vision can be restored.
To test the new approach, the experts conducted an experiment on a blind laboratory rat. They acted with ultrasound on the eyes of the animal, and as a result, some groups of neurons in the eye of the rat “came to life”, that is, were activated.
Thanks to this effect of ultrasound, signals from the cells of the retina of the eye are also sent to the brain. More experiments showed that the higher the frequency of ultrasound, the more neurons were activated.
At the moment, scientists are working on creating a device for human testing. Nanoscope Technologies LLC, an American company, will license such an ultrasonic stimulation system and provide support in conducting tests on monkeys and rabbits.
If all tests are successful, then such technology will begin to be tested on humans over the next three to five years.
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