A close-up view of a single cortical visual prosthesis tile with ..
The development of visual prostheses started early some 60 ..
Since Brindley’s research, the focus was to assist the blind in reading. However, in the eighties the emphasis shifted to independent ambulation, as the development of the cassette tape and the availability of most reading material, and more particularly books on tapes relegated the primary aim of reading to a lesser importance. The need to design a portable device was impeded by the size of the electronics, the amount of current drawn by the batteries and their size. Only in the late nineties, with the advances in electronics miniaturization and computer technology, did it become possible to design a truly portable artificial vision system.
Development of "visual prosthesis"
A neural prosthesis is a device that aims to restore or replace the functions of the nervous system that are lost to disease or injury. Examples include devices to improve hearing, vision, motor and cognitive functions. Neural prostheses artificially stimulate the nervous system to convey sensory information, activate paralysed muscles or modulate the excitability of neural circuits to improve conditions such as chronic pain, epilepsy or tremor. Some neuroprostheses also record activity from the nervous system, which can be useful for patients who have difficulty moving or communicating. These devices can decipher the intention of the user or detect ongoing brain events such as seizures by recording neural signals directly from the brain. Emerging neuroprostheses aim to ‘close the loop’ using recorded neural activity to control stimulation delivered elsewhere in the nervous system with the goal of improving function.
Scientists Set Sights on an Implantable Prosthetic for …
Researchers Advance Retinal Patch Derived from Stem Cells
The Foundation Fighting Blindness has been funding David Gamm, MD, PhD, University of Wisconsin, Madison, for a decade to develop stem-cell-derived treatments for retinal diseases. Dr. Gamm’s innovative retinal patch — consisting of photoreceptors and support cells known as retina pigment epithelium — holds promise for restoring vision in people with macular diseases including age-related macular degeneration and the leading inherited form of macular degeneration, known as Stargardt disease. A company known as Opsis was recently formed by Dr. Gamm and his collaborators to move the therapy into and through a clinical trial and out to the patients who can benefit from it.