Monthly Archives: August 2015

Bionic Eye


The first implant, performed by surgeons in Manchester, was implanted into a patient affected by dry-age macular degeneration (MD) and as a result the patient had lost his central vision completely.

How the bionic eye works:

  • The implanted eye picks up images from a camera placed into glasses which the patient wears.
  • The images are transferred into electrical signals, which are then sent to an electrode array in the retina.
  • These electrodes encourage the retinal cells to send the information to the brain .

After the bionic eye was implanted, the patient was able to detect movement of lines on a computer screen.


Image showing the patient who recieved the first implant of a bionic eye to cure dry age related macular degeneration.

Thank you for reading.


Restoration of hearing due to TMC1 gene in mice

I am currently doing an EPQ on hearing loss and specifically future treatments and the possibility for a cure in the future.

I came across some research done by scientists which involved inserting the TMC1 by use of AAV1, which is considered safe as a viral vector, into the cochlea of mice with genetic deafness and these were their findings:

  • In the recessive deafness model, gene therapy with TMC1 restored the ability of sensory hair cells to respond to sound—producing a measurable electrical current—and also restored activity in the auditory portion of the brainstem.
  • Most importantly, the deaf mice regained their ability to hear. To test hearing, the researchers placed the mice in a “startle box” and sounded abrupt, loud tones. The mice with TMC1 mutations did not respond, but with gene therapy, they jumped as high as a normal mouse. (The force of their jump was measured by a plate on the floor underneath them and was detectable at sounds beginning around 80 decibels.)
  • In the dominant deafness model, gene therapy with a related gene, TMC2, was successful at the cellular and brain level and was partially successful at restoring actual hearing in the startle test.

Thank you for reading.