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Bionic Eye

Bionic Eye

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Published by: Asfia_Samreen_2963 on Feb 17, 2010
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BIONIC EYE (Electronically powered eye)
Presented by:
Salma Khanam.H.M - VI SEMESTER Asfia Samreen – VI SEMESTER Department of Instrumentation Technology,KBN College of Engineering, Gulbarga
Researches working for the BostonRetinal Implant Project have been developing aBionic eye implant that could restore the eye sightof people who suffer from age related blindness.The implant is based on a small chip that issurgically implanted behind the retina, at the back of the eye ball. An ultra-thin wire strengthens thedamaged optic nerve; its purpose is to transmitlight and images to the brain’s vision system,where it is normally processed. Other than theimplanted chip and wire, most of the device sitsoutside the eye. The users would need to wear special eye glasses battery-powered camera and atransmitter, which would send images to the chipimplanted behind the retina. The new device isexpected to be quite durable, since the chip isenclosed in a Titanium casing, making it bothwater-proof and corrosion-proof. The researchesestimate that the device will last for at least10years inside the eye.
The purpose of the report is to provide an accurateand detailed description of the Bioniceye(Optoelectronic Retinal Prosthesis System)and its function. The new technology tested byMrs.Moorfoot uses an external camera worn on a pair of dark glasses that sends images to a radioreceiver implanted near the eye that transmits thesignal on to a tiny silicon and platinum chip thatsits on the retina. This information then goesdown the optic nerve into the brain. The team lead by Dr. Mark Humayun, professor oophthalmology and Biomedical engineering at theDoheny eye institute in Los Angeles, Californiahave now developed a small and powerful camerathat could be implanted inside the patient’s eye,rather than worn on a pair of glasses. “The camerais very, very small and very low power, so it cango inside your eye and couple your eye movementto where the camera is,” said Dr Humayun.
We are able to see because light from an object canmove through space and reach our eyes. Once lightreaches our eyes, signals are sent to our brain, andour brain deciphers the information in order todetect the appearance, location and movement of the objects we are sighting at.The whole process, as complex as it is, would not be possible if it were not for the presence of light.Without light, there would be no sight.The human eye is the organ which gives us thesense of sight, allowing us to learn more about thesurrounding world than any of the other five senses.The eyeball is set in a protective cone-shaped cavityin the skull called the orbit or socket and measuresapproximately one inch in diameter. The orbit issurrounded by layers of soft, fatty tissue which protect the eye and enable it to turn easily. The
important part of an eye that is responsible for vision is
.The retina lies at the back of the eye and it acts likethe film in a camera, receiving and processingeverything you see.In humans there are two types of light sensitivecells in the retina:
Rod Cells
Cone Cells
2.1 What are Rod cells and Cone cells?
Rod cells pick up movement out of the corner of theeye and also, in a normal eye it is the rods thatoperate in poor light or at night. There are about120 million rods in each eye and they are morenumerous towards the outer edge of the retinaThe cone cells are used in colour vision and in close precision work like reading. There are not as manycones and they are more concentrated in the centreof the retina (the Macula).
2.2 Disease of eye
Retinitis pigmentosa
Macular degeneration
2.2.1 Retinitis pigmentosa
Retinitis Pigmentosa (RP) is the name given to agroup of hereditary diseases of the retina of the eye
RP may be caused by a breakdown in the functionof the rods or the cones in some part of the retina.The retina is so complex that breakdowns mayoccur in a variety of ways and so RP is not a singledisorder but a great number of disorders. The breakdown of cone function may be called Macular Degeneration.
2.2.2 Macular Degeneration
Macular is a sensitive area in the centre of the retinawhich provides us with sight in the centre of our field of vision. It allows us to see the fine detailswhen we look directly at something. In macular degeneration, a layer beneath the retina, called theretinal pigment epithelium (RPE), gradually wearsout from its lifelong duties of disposing of retinalwaste products.A large proportion of macular degeneration casesare age- related.Age related Macular Degeneration (AMD) usuallyaffects people over the age of 50 and there are twodistinct types - "wet" AMD and "dry" AMD. "Wet"AMD results from the growth of new blood vesselsin the choroid, causing an accumulation of fluid inthe macula which leads to retinal damage. This typeof degeneration can often be successfully arrested by laser surgery."Dry" AMD represents at least 80% of all AMDcases and results in atrophy of the Retina. Usuallyyellowish-white round spots called drusen firstappear in a scattered pattern deep in the macula.Later degeneration of both the Pigment Epitheliumand the cones begins. While AMD is not inheritedin a predictable way, heredity may be involved tosome extent.
A group of American scientists have given avisually impaired grandmother a chance to see her grandchildren dance and play football with a“Bionic eye”.Linda Moorfoot, who suffers from the eye conditionRetinitis Pigmentosa that causes blindness,isthrilled after having part of her sight restored by aBionic eye.
3.1 Artificial Silicon Retina (ASR)
The ASR is a silicon chip 2 mm in diameter and1/1000 inch in thickness. It contains approximately3,500 microscopic solar cells called"microphotodiodes," each having its ownstimulating electrode. These microphotodiodes aredesigned to convert the light energy from imagesinto thousands of tiny electrical impulses to
stimulate the remaining functional cells of the retinain patients suffering with AMD and RP types of conditions.
Magnified image of ASR 
The ASR is powered solely by incident light anddoes not require the use of external wires or  batteries. When surgically implanted under theretina, in a location known as the sub retinal space,the ASR is designed to produce visual signalssimilar to those produced by the photoreceptor layer. From their sub retinal location these artificial"photoelectric" signals from the ASR are in a position to induce biological visual signals in theremaining functional retinal cellswhich may be processed and sent via the opticnerve to the brain. 
ASR implant in eye
3.2 How Artificial Vision Will Work?
Creating artificial sight:
The current path that scientists are taking tocreate artificial vision received a jolt in 1988,
whenDr. Mark Humayun
demonstrated that a blind person could be made to see light by stimulating thenerve ganglia behind the retina with an electricalcurrent. This test proved that the nerves behind theretina still functioned even when the retina haddegenerated. Based on this information, scientistsset out to create a device that could translate imagesand electrical pulses that could restore vision.The dot above the date on this penny is the full sizeof the ASR Today, such a device is very close to becomingavailable to the millions of people who have losttheir vision to retinal disease.As you can see in the picture at the top of this page,the ASR is an extremely tiny device, smaller thanthe surface of a pencil eraser. It has a diameter of  just 2 mm (.078 inch) and is thinner than a humanhair. There is good reason for its microscopic size.In order for an artificial retina to work it has to besmall enough so that doctors can transplant it in theeye without damaging the other structures withinthe eye.

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