Call us free on 0800 862 0373

Sign in to view your quotes
Email address:
Password or PIN:

Forgotten your password? Reset it here.

Hope for blindness cure after scientists restore sight in mice

Published on 20/04/2012

British scientists have successfully restored the sight of blind mice, bringing us a step closer to new treatment for patients with degenerative eye disease.

Scientists are developing a treatment for macular degeneration, or age related blindness

There are two types of photoreceptor cells in the eyes- rods and cones. In mice and humans more than 95% are rods. These work well in the dark and are good at spotting movement, but see the world in black and white. Cones are far less numerous, but give a sharp, colour view of the world in good lighting conditions.

Scientists at University College London Institute of Opthalmology injected immature rod-photoreceptor cells from healthy young mice directly into the retinas of adult mice that had night blindness.

Each jab delivered around 200,000 rod photoreceptor cells, of which 20,000 to 30,000 attached to the animals' retinas and made working neural connections. The scientists used only rods in the latest experiments, as they are easier to transplant.

After four to six weeks, researchers tested the vision of the treated mice in a dimly lit water maze. Writing in the journal Nature, they found that the mice with transplanted rod cells were able to see a visual cue to find a hidden platform to enable them to get out of the water. The untreated mice found the platform only by chance.

Professor Robin Ali, at UCL Institute of Ophthalmology and Moorfields Eye Hospital, who led the research, said: "We've shown for the first time that transplanted photoreceptor cells can integrate successfully with the existing retinal circuitry and truly improve vision.”

Loss of photoreceptor cells is the cause of blindness in many human eye diseases, including age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Macular degeneration is a painless eye condition that leads to the gradual loss of central vision, and is the most common cause of blindness, which affects up to 15% of people over 75.

Although the results of this study are promising, there is still a way to go before this treatment might be suitable for humans.

If you want to receive eye treatment through your private medical insurance then compare health insurance policies with dental and optical cover.

© ActiveQuote Ltd. 2012

Categories:  Medical
Hope for blindness cure after scientists restore sight in miceBritish scientists have successfully restored the sight of blind mice, bringing us a step closer to new treatment for patients with degenera    tweet it on twittershare with your friends on Facebookshare with your friends on MySpaceBlog it on your LinkedIn profile

No.1 health insurance broker as rated by customers

I found the quality of service to be very helpful, and pretty much above my expectation. I'd recommend anyone to use ActiveQuote.

Review centre member

Very helpful and polite and always try their best to obtain the best quotes. Have been using them for the last 3 years and will continue to use them in the future.

Review centre member

A great service from the initial call, to finalising the agreement. I would highly recommend to my family and friends.

Review centre member

Proactive, efficient, and offered me insurance I need. I would say half price I would end up paying if I did it by myself. Many thanks.

Review centre member

Excellent service. Explained everything in detail and really helped to find the right insurance best suited to my needs - which wasn't necessarily the most expensive. 

Review centre member

Good value and the advisor was very helpful and recommended the best policy for my grandson. I would definitely use this service again and recommend to others.

Review centre member

We were contacted in good time to make a knowledgable choice. We were given plenty of options with lots of information to enable us to make the right choice.

Review centre member

The service I received was excellent, the staff member was very efficient and knowledgable. She went out of her way to get the best policy for me.

Review centre member

Great service. I really appreciated the help provided by Active Quote to arrange health insurance. The agent was very informative and proactive. Many thanks!

Review centre member

I received excellent care and attention from the first phone call till the last. Friendly, efficient and patient.

Review centre member
This site is operated by Insurance Broker ActiveQuote Ltd registered in England & Wales company number 6765845.
Authorised and Regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). Firm reference number 501109 as detailed on the Financial Services Register. Please read our Key Facts document.
For information about your rights as a consumer visit Citizens Advice.

Our insurance comparison service is free and easy for you to use, but you are responsible for making sure all your information is entered correctly, and for choosing your insurer.

This site uses cookies in order to work correctly - these are not harmful and do not contain personal information. By using this site you consent to this. I understand  Tell me more

please wait ...