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Apparently, we can rebuild him...
May 1, 2007 12:00 PM   Subscribe

Doctors in London have made the world's first attempt to treat a retinal degeneration disorder using gene therapy. "The researchers aim to restore the activity in these cells and therefore restore vision by implanting healthy copies of the key gene into the RPE at the back of the eye. In other optical news, wired.com is leading with a piece about "Luke 's Binoculars" (yes, as in Skywalker) - a gadget that is meant to provide soldiers with a 120-degree field of view and allow him/her to be able to spot moving vehicles as far as 10 kilometers away by integrating EEG electrodes that monitor the wearer's neural signals. CTTWS, I presume?
posted by chuckdarwin (6 comments total)

 
Dude! Where's my flying car???
posted by ZachsMind at 12:42 PM on May 1, 2007


It's interesting that it seems that were going to have the technology to upload ourselves just about the same time as we will be able to make it unnecessary. You wait 1 million years for a bus......
posted by Jakey at 12:52 PM on May 1, 2007


I sure hope it works and leads to studies of the much more common ARMD, which I have. I got to the off-label Avastin treatment too late. It couldn't deal with scar tissue. So I have been waiting impatiently for this sort of news.

For those of you who don't know about avastin, it is an inexpensive drug originally intended to treat colon cancer, but it was discovered that it could work almost miraculously for people with the wet form of Macular Degeneration. The problem was that the drug company refused to apply for its use in that way because they already had a much more expensive drug aimed at that market. Fortunately it didn't stop the more ethical eye doctors.
posted by donfactor at 12:55 PM on May 1, 2007


ZachsMind, that was the gyrocopter post a few days back...

Anyway, I was just thinking about the six-million-dollar-man... Many of his damaged parts are replaced by experimental bionic limbs, including his right arm, his left eye, and both legs.

WTF? He only had one good arm and one good eye?
posted by chuckdarwin at 1:16 PM on May 1, 2007


In other optical news, wired.com is leading with a piece about "Luke 's Binoculars" (yes, as in Skywalker) - a gadget that is meant to provide soldiers with a 120-degree field of view and allow him/her to be able to spot moving vehicles as far as 10 kilometers away by integrating EEG electrodes that monitor the wearer's neural signals.

The military waste so much money on this bullshit. What would be wrong with VR goggles that showed the wearer his surroundings, but also highlighted anything far away and moving?
posted by delmoi at 2:07 PM on May 1, 2007


donfactor: From the way it sounds this probably isn't going to work for advanced ARMD if you already have scarring. Although there isn't a ton of information given here, this sounds like something that would need to be done fairly early on. What you'd need is some form of regenerative technique.

I feel your pain: I myself have been dealing with Presumed Ocular Histoplasmosis Syndrome for several years, and have the photocoagulation scars to prove it. The Avastin treatment was a welcome surprise. Sadly, I've discovered it's not a permanent solution, and it doesn't always seem to work.

Still, it's a travesty how Genentech has resisted seeking approval for its use in order to make cash off the much, much, much more expensive Lucentis. The prices in Germany as quoted by my doctor: Avastin: 50 Euro, Lucentis: 1,500 Euro.
posted by moonbiter at 12:57 AM on May 2, 2007


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