Photos: Researchers Develop Cortical Implant to Restore Vision for Blind People

Australian university researchers have developed a world-first cortical implant: an electronic device that sits on the brain and can restore vision to people who have lost it.

Researchers at Monash University in Melbourne, Australia, announced earlier this week they had developed a vision-restoring cortical implant and are preparing for human trials.

The device comes out of 10 years of research driven by the Monash Vision Group, a collaborative partnership between Monash University and Melbourne’s Alfred Hospital.

Photos: Researchers Develop Cortical Implant to Restore Vision for Blind People

The cortical implant and microchip for the Gennaris Bionic Eye, a vision-restoring device developed at Australia’s Monash University

“Further investigations have shown promise for this technology to deliver improved health outcomes to patients with otherwise untreatable neurological conditions, such as limb paralysis,” Monash said in the release. “Many people who are clinically blind have damaged optic nerves. These prevent signals being transmitted from the retina to the ‘vision center’ of the brain.”

Photos: Researchers Develop Cortical Implant to Restore Vision for Blind People

The headset part of the Gennaris Bionic Eye, a cortical implant developed at Australia’s Monash University that promises to restore sight for patients

“Our design creates a visual pattern from combinations of up to 172 spots of light (phosphenes) which provides information for the individual to navigate indoor and outdoor environments, and recognize the presence of people and objects around them,” he continued.

The device’s first success was recorded in a paper published in the Journal of Neural Engineering in July, which detailed a successful 2,700-hour trial on sheep. Jeffrey Rosenfeld, a senior neurosurgeon at Alfred Hospital and lead author of the study, said it indicates that “long-term stimulation through wireless arrays can be achieved without induction of widespread tissue damage, nor visible behavioral issues or seizures resulting from the stimulation.”

Like the Monash project, the Neuralink device was tested on livestock first, and Musk’s demonstration included a live feed from the brains of several pigs brought to the press hall.

Sourse: sputniknews.com

Photos: Researchers Develop Cortical Implant to Restore Vision for Blind People

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