Researchers from University of Oxford have found a way to restore vision in blind mice by injecting a certain type of cells in the eye that sense light. The study can potentially help design therapeutics that can restore vision in people who suffer from eye diseases.
The study included mice that lacked photoreceptor cells in their retinas. Researchers then injected precursor cells in the eye. These precursor cells can form building blocks of retina once inside the eye.
"We have recreated the whole structure, basically it's the first proof that you can take a completely blind mouse, put the cells in and reconstruct the entire light-sensitive layer," Prof Robert MacLaren told BBC.
Experts in the field of ophthalmology say that this approach can help restore vision in patients of diseases like retinitis pigmentosa.
"This is probably what you would need to do to restore sight in a patient that has lost their vision," said Prof Pete Coffee, from the Institute of Ophthalmology at University College London, reports BBC. He added that more research is needed to show the effectiveness of the treatment and that just brain scans and light sensitivity tests aren't enough.
The study is published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.