Navigation Links
FIU Researcher Advances Retinal Implant That Could Restore Sight For The Blind
Date:11/14/2013

MIAMI, Nov. 14, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- People who went blind as a result of certain diseases or injuries may have renewed hope of seeing again thanks to a retinal implant developed with the help of Florida International University's W. Kinzy Jones, a professor in the College of Engineering and Computing.

A tiny video camera mounted on special glasses captures the scene in the patient's environment, and a pocket controller relays the captured video signal to the implant. Inspired by cochlear implants that can restore hearing to some deaf people, the retinal implant works by electrically stimulating nerve cells that normally carry visual input from the retina to the brain, and bypassing the lost retinal cells.

The Boston Retinal Implant Project, a highly-specialized, academically-based team of 30 researchers including Jones, was responsible for bringing the implant to light. The group is comprised of biologists and engineers from Harvard, Cornell, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and others who are developing new technologies for the blind.

"Jones' work was one the most important technological developments needed to make the device possible," said Douglas Shire, engineering manager for the Boston Retinal Implant Project. "As a result, users of the retinal implant will be able to adjust the implant according to their needs."

Jones has been working for years to advance the airtight sealed titanium housing and feed-through component that transfers the signals from the implanted microchip to the electrodes. His improvements in the density of that feed-through will greatly improve the quality of the image the person wearing the device will see.

The retinal implant was designed for people who lost vision due to injury to the eyes; progressive vision loss caused by eye disorders; or age-related macular degeneration, when the center of the retina that is responsible for central vision deteriorates. According to the National Institutes of Health, age-related macular degeneration is a leading cause of vision loss in Americans 60 years old and older.  

"The impact of this technology, which increases the available pixels that can be stimulated, will bring enhanced visual acuity to people with debilitating eye loss," Jones said. "My mother had macular degeneration and I saw the quality of her life degrade as the disease progressed. Hopefully, when these devices are available for FDA approved use, total loss of eye sight from macular degeneration or retinitis pigmentosa will be a thing of the past within 10 to 15 years."

Recently, a similar device that features 60 electrodes was approved for use in patients and has proven successful in allowing people who were blind to read words on a screen.

Shire explained that the device that the Boston Group is building with Jones' help has more than 256 electrodes and therefore allows for images with a larger number of pixels, which is expected to give patients a meaningful visual experience.

Click here for an illustration of the device and here for images.

Media Contact:
James Hellegaard
561-319-2233
news.fiu.edu


'/>"/>
SOURCE Florida International University
Copyright©2012 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved

Related medicine technology :

1. PRA Staff Named Finalists in Clinical Researcher of the Year Competition
2. Kaiser Permanente Researchers Honored for Drug Therapy Study
3. Pharmaceutical Giants Back Researchers in Unique US Competition
4. A Young Researcher from Italy Wins this Years "Basel Declaration Award for Education in Animal Research"
5. Northwestern Medicine Researchers Investigate New Stent Technology to Treat Coronary Artery Disease
6. Tisch MS Researchers Announce Breakthrough in Disease Monitoring
7. BiOptix announces low cost Surface Plasmon Resonance Services for Colorado-based researchers
8. University Researchers Use Biozoom Scanner To Investigate Relationship Between Stress And Work
9. Sony Biotechnology Inc.s New Technology for Science Provides Researchers Results in Color
10. Researchers Funded By The Pancreatic Cancer Action Network Leverage $9.15 Million Investment By The Organization Into $91 Million In Subsequent Pancreatic Cancer Research Funding
11. Quantum Materials Corporation Supplies Tetrapod Quantum Dots to U.S. Government Researchers
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:10/11/2017)... , Oct. 11, 2017  Hill-Rom Holdings, Inc. ... Aspen Surgical facility in Las Piedras, Puerto ... scalpels and blades. ... that the facility sustained minor structural damage, temporary loss ... Maria. Repairs have been completed, manufacturing operations have resumed, ...
(Date:10/7/2017)... , Oct. 6, 2017   Provista, a ... than $100 billion in purchasing power, today announced a ... information. The Newsroom is the online home ... trends, infographics, expert bios, news releases, slideshows and events. ... to a wealth of resources at their fingertips, viewers ...
(Date:10/4/2017)... -- According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), influenza ... Care is helping communities across Massachusetts , ... no-cost* flu shots through the end of the month. *Some ... ... flu shot is by the end of October, according to the Centers ...
Breaking Medicine Technology:
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... The Visiting Nurse Association (VNA) ... a collection of specialty vendors and unique items from across the nation, this holiday-themed ... and wellness services offered by the VNA. The boutique will be open Saturday, ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... , ... October 13, 2017 , ... Global Healthcare Management’s ... Alexandria Park in Milford, NJ. This free event, sponsored by Global Healthcare Management’s ... The fun run is geared towards children of all ages; it is a ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... Talented host, ... lowdown on sciatica in a new episode of "Success Files," which is an ... and innovation and investigates each subject in-depth with passion and integrity. , Sciatica ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... “The Journey: From the ... danger possible to save lost souls in the Philippines. “The Journey: From the Mountains ... a dedicated teacher of the Bible. She has taught all ages and currently teaches ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... First Healthcare Compliance (FHC), ... will showcase a range of technology and learning solutions at the 68th Annual ... Expo to be held October 14–18, 2017 at the Mandalay Bay Resort in ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):