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    Home > Active Ingredient News > Study of Nervous System > Science: Gene therapy can save vision

    Science: Gene therapy can save vision

    • Last Update: 2020-06-17
    • Source: Internet
    • Author: User
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    june 6, 2020/PRNewswire/ --- Humans rely mainly on vision for their activitiesLosing sight means being unable to read, recognize others or find thingsMacular degeneration is one of the leading causes of vision impairment worldwide, affecting nearly 200 million peopleThe main reason is that the photosensitive body in the retina loses sensitivity to light, which can lead to impaired vision or even complete blindnessIn response, scientists at the Basel Institute of Molecular and Clinical Ophthalmology (IOB) recently worked with colleagues from the German Primate Centre (DPZ) to develop a new treatment based on gene therapyThey managed to activate the degraded sensor using near-infrared lightThe study was published in the journal Science(photo source:the co-existence of light-sensitive and light-insensitive light receptor regions in the retina during the onset of degenerative photoreceptor diseaseFor example, patients with macular degeneration lose sight in the central part of the retina, but maintain peripheral visionnow, scientists have successfully developed a new treatment that restores the photosensitivity of the degenerative retina without damaging the rest of the visionspecies such as bats and snakes are known to be able to locate near-infrared light from prey carcassesThis is done by using a thermally sensitive ion channel that detects the heat of near-infrared lightThis allows bats and snakes to overlay thermal and visual images in the brain, responding to their surroundings with greater precisionAs a result, scientists have developed this new gene therapyto make the retinal sensor with near-infrared sensitivity, the researchers designed a three-component system The first component contains engineering DNA to ensure that genes that encode thermal channels are expressed only in photosensitive cells The second ingredient is the gold nanorod, which is a small particle that effectively absorbs near-infrared light The third component is an antibody that is firmly bonded between the thermal channel expressed in the sensor and the gold nanorod that locally captures near-infrared light and locally releases heat the researchers first tested their system in mouse models with retinal degeneration, confirming that near-infrared light effectively stimulates photosensitive cells, and that the signal is transmitted to retinal nerve cells, which represent the output of the retina to the higher visual center of the brain Next, they showed that stimulating the eyes of mice with near-infrared light was also absorbed by neurons in the brain region, which is important for conscious vision (the main visual cortex) They also designed a behavioral test in which untreated blind mice could not use near-infrared stimulation to learn simple tasks, while blind mice treated with a three-component system could perform tasks related to near-infrared stimulation Daniel Hillier, author of the article, said: "We believe that near-infrared stimulation is an important step in providing vision to blind patients so that they can regain their reading ability We hope that this discovery will give hope to the blind " (Bio Valley source: Restoring vision by gene therapy original source: "Restoring light arry" using science (2020) .. 1126/science.aaz5887
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