15.04.2011

Algae genes able to restore blind people"s vision?

Algae genes able to restore blind people"s vision?

Scientists have suggested that blind people may soon be made able to see, due to a light-sensitive gene taken from algae.

Researchers at the University of Southern California believe that they may be able to replace damaged retinal cells with similar ones found in the green pond matter.

The technique has reportedly proved successful in mice and now developers are keen to try it out on human eyes within the next two years.

"The idea is to develop a treatment for blindness," Alan Horsager, from the university, told the New Scientist.

It is thought that more than one million people are affected by vision problems caused by damaged or malfunctioning retinas in Britain alone.

Meanwhile, a US eye care specialist has reassured concerned parents that exposure to TV and computer screens should not lead to blindness.

Speaking to the Sioux City Journal, Dr Beth Bruening explained that, while excessive television watching and video gaming may cause eye strain, it is unlikely to ever result in vision loss.

by Adrian Galbreth


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