[AI] Fwd: good news for those who have issues with corneas.
nithin.hello at gmail.com
Mon Sep 20 07:39:10 EDT 2010
---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: girish v <girish.v13 at gmail.com>
Date: Mon, 20 Sep 2010 11:41:04 +0530
Subject: good news for those who have issues with corneas.
To: "girish.loveall" <girish.loveall at gmail.com>
This is a good news to most of our friends.
Artificial corneas restore sight for the first time
Scientists hope the breakthrough will also slash the cornea transplant
waiting list which every year falls short by more than 500 in Britain alone.
The new technique involves growing human tissue or collagen in the
laboratory and then shaping it using a contact lens mould.
Damaged and scarred tissue from the front of the eye is then removed and the
"biosynthetic" replacement is stitched in its place.
Eventually existing cells and nerves in the eye grow over the artificial
cornea incorporating it fully into the eye.
The first trials of the operation have shown that it is just as successful
as live tissue transplantation and in some cases patients have had their
sight fully restored.
Dr May Griffiths, of Linköping University, in Sweden, said: "We were very
excited by the results.
"This study is the first to show an artificially fabricated cornea can
integrate with the human eye and stimulate regeneration.
"With further research, this approach could help restore sight to millions
of people who are waiting for a donated human cornea for transplantation.
"There is a shortage of donors and this could solve that problem. It can
also be done at a fraction of the cost."
The cornea is a vulnerable shield or lens protecting the eye and plays a key
role in creating vision.
It consists of three main layers – the endothelium, stroma and epithelium.
But many are damaged by scarring or disease causing blurring and even
complete vision loss very much like a lens of a camera being scratched.
A clinical trial of 10 patients with damaged corneas whose damaged tissue
was operated on and replaced with the artificial cornea, found vision
improved in six of them.
After contact lens fitting their sight was comparable to conventional
corneal transplantation with human donor tissue, according to the findings
published in Science Translational Medicine.
Humans are currently the only source of corneas for transplantation, and the
supply of donor tissue is limited.
In addition, the artificial corneas may actually work better than human
versions because they avoid the chance of infection or rejection.
Patients did not experience any rejection reaction or require long-term
immune suppression, which are serious side effects associated with the use
of human donor tissue.
The biosynthetic corneas also became sensitive to touch and began producing
normal tears to keep the eye oxygenated.
Globally, diseases that lead to clouding of the cornea affect more than 10
million people worldwide making them the most common cause of blindness.
More than a decade ago, Dr Griffith and her colleagues began developing
biosynthetic corneas using collagen produced in the laboratory and moulded
into the shape of a cornea.
After extensive laboratory testing Dr Griffith began collaborating with eye
surgeon Dr Per Fagerholm, also at Linköping University, to provide the first
human experience with biosynthetic cornea implantation.
Dr Fagerholm, said: "We are very encouraged by these results and by the
great potential of biosynthetic corneas.
"Further biomaterial enhancements and modifications to the surgical
technique are ongoing, and new studies are being planned that will extend
the use of the biosynthetic cornea to a wider range of sight-threatening
conditions requiring transplantation."
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