Scientists have developed a unique device of its kind that is capable of restoring the sight of blind people.
Experts at Monash University in Australia have worked for more than a decade to develop a vision restoration device that uses a combination of smartphone-style electronics and brain-mounted microelectrodes.
The system proved effective in early clinical research and sheep, and researchers are now preparing the first trials on humans.
This new technology bypasses damage to the optic nerve, which is often referred to as clinical blindness.
The device translates the details collected by a camera and transmits it wirelessly to the tiles installed in the brain via a vision processor unit and costume software.
These tiles convert image data into electrical waves that travel to brain neurons through micro-electrodes that are thinner than a human hair.
Much remains to be done to develop this device on a commercial basis, and human trials alone are not part of it.
The team that developed the technology is now working to raise additional capital to ensure its preparation and distribution under a commercial project in the near future.
Initial research on 10 sheep was successful and no side effects were observed.
Although research on animals is very different from that of humans, the research team believes that their technology will be more useful than sight.
They hope that the same procedure will be useful and part of the treatment for paralyzed patients as well as patients with other mental illnesses.