Scientists partially restore sight of a blind person

gene therapy-blindness

Thanks to optogenetic therapy scientists can partially restore sight to a blind person

Scientists from the University of Pittsburgh, in the United States and the Institute of Vision, in Paris restore partially view of a blind person. This thanks to the optogenetic therapy.

A man who had been blind for 40 years managed to perceive some objects, using a technique that consists of injecting a non-pathogenic virus that carries genes for a light-sensitive protein.

Blind man

The 58-year-old volunteer was treated with the optogenetic therapy. And with the use of special glasses I can diffusely observe objects in a limited field of vision.

“Its objective is to control nerve cells through light, and with this the patient could regain sight”

For a few months, the patient was putting on the glasses and training that limited vision, which allowed that after subsequent tests it was verified how he was able to differentiate objects with the eye that had been treated but in a diffuse way.

This technique to restore partially vision It is the result of 13 years of work. The research, published in Nature Medicine, concluded that optogenetic therapy can restore visual function in people with blindness related to retinitis pigmentosa.

Scientists restore sight

Retinitis pigmentosa is an inherited and progressive neurodegenerative eye disease in which the loss of photoreceptors can lead to total blindness.

The method was developed to create optogenetic proteins sensitive only to amber light. Something important because it is a more suitable shade to avoid flashes that could damage the retinal tissue.

Although at the moment it is a test with limited results, it is suggested that the optogenetic therapy it could be very beneficial in treating certain inherited blindness.

For now, scientists are working on improving glasses to make them thinner and less bulky. The study is expected to be fully completed by 2025.

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