Yesterday I was reading a magazine about a lady who loved colors. She usually dressed in bright outfits and painted her home with all the hues of the rainbow. She reminded people of the sixties and seventies. Colors play an important role in life. But some people are not very lucky in this regard. They are affected by an uncommon disease called Retinitis Pigmentosa which gradually robs them off their sight.
Retinitis Pigmentosa is a hereditary disease which damages the retina and leads to blindness. The retina is a tissue at the back of the inner eye which converts light images to nerve signals and sends them to the brain. But scientists are hard at work round the clock to bring about a change in these people’s lives, as you are about to read in this post.
In the past, researchers have developed retinal implants that have allowed the blind people to see shapes and objects within days of the implant being installed. And now the scientists have gone a mile further and streamed Braille patterns in to the patient’s retina. By God’s grace this person could read four letter words accurately and quickly with a help of an ocular neuro prosthetic device.
Neuroprosthetic devices are electrical or mechanical devices which substitute functions lost by disease or injury. This scientific milestone could revolutionize and improve the quality of life for about 200,000 people in the world who suffer from blindness as a result of retinitis pigmentosa. To understand the working process of this device I have attached a youtube video.
There are other therapies which are novel and very interesting to read. Oh! I cannot wait to share it with you. The people in white coat have shown that transplanting light sensitive photo receptors into the eyes of the visually impaired mice can restore vision.
Things are getting more interesting even as I type this. Scientists have found cells called the corneal limbal stromal cells which are taken from the front surface of the eye. Now these cells have stem cell properties and can be cultured to create retinal cells. This could result in the development of new techniques to treat retinitis pigmentosa and macular degeneration, a disease which gradually deteriorates macula which is at the center of retina.
It is a sincere request, that you should remember all these researchers in your prayers, asking God to give them wisdom and understanding to find answers for all the puzzling problems haunting this planet. And this is my heartfelt wish that one day all the people born under the sun would look at the heavens and enjoy the beautiful hues of the rainbow.
Photo of human eye by dream designsPhoto courtesy of www.freedigitalphotos.net