Artificial Retina Developed by Okayama University Promises to Provide Effective and Safe Treatment for Vision Loss
June 30, 2015
A photoelectric dye-coupled polyethylene film developed by Okayama University is a retinal prosthesis called OUReP™. It generates light-evoked surface electric potentials and stimulates neurons.
Researchers in Okayama University Graduate School of Medicine, Dentistry and Pharmaceutical Sciences have shown the recovery of vision in rats with retinitis pigmentosa (RP) and electroretinographic responses in their eyes following the implantation of the retinal prosthesis “OUReP™”.
The findings were published on March 3, 2015 in the Journal of Artificial Organs.
Alamusi, T. Matsuo and their colleagues studied rats with RP that had OUReP™ implanted at the age of 14 weeks. The vision recovery of the rats was shown by behavior tests. They also implanted the dye-coupled film in rats with RP at the age of 6 weeks and observed no additional retinal changes at the site of the implantation after five months. The study showed the safety and the efficacy of the retinal prosthesis “OUReP™”.
The dye-coupled film is sufficiently thin and soft so that the implantation can be done by existing procedures. In addition, the prosthesis would be available at a reasonable price because the film materials are not expensive. The function of the prosthesis is expected to allow for a large field of view and high vision resolution.
Mototaka Senda, Ph.D.
Director, Okayama University Silicon Valley Office
Organization for Research Promotion and Collaboration, Okayama University
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Fremont, California USA
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Toshihiko Matsuo, M.D.
Graduate School of Medicine, Dentistry and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Okayama University, Okayama, Japan