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Scientists have found genes that can actually reverse vision loss in humans
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Scientists have found genes that can actually reverse vision loss in humans

Researchers have made the groundbreaking discovery that could change the way we see forever

Scientists have miraculously found genes that can actually reverse vision loss in humans.

Researchers at the Université de Montréal made the groundbreaking discovery and have since devised a treatment strategy that promises to give back the gift of sight to patients living with degenerative retinal disease.

The new findings could allow a patient's previous loss of vision to be restored.

Scientists have miraculously found genes that can actually reverse vision loss in humans.
Pexels / Mathias Celis

Degenerative retinal disease is defined by Science Direct as 'a progressive neurologic disorder caused by genetic mutations and/or environmental or pathologic damage to the retina'.

The inherited medical condition gradually impairs a person’s ability to see, impacting the extent to which they can read text, distinguish colors, see objects that are placed sideways.

It can eventually make some sufferers completely blind altogether.

While the condition was previously said to be incurable, scientists are now raising hope that a brand-new approach could - at long last - cure retinal degeneration.

In a study, published in the journal PNAS, researchers explain in the abstract that their work is 'opening the door to cell therapy approaches for neurodegenerative diseases'.

The findings are 'opening the door' to a very exciting possibility.
Pexels / Ksenia Chernaya

People who suffer with degenerative retinal disease experience the cone photoreceptor cells - the cells responsible for color vision, visual sharpness and light perception - gradually decreasing as they grow older, which consequently leads to an inevitable vision loss.

When an individual reaches and advanced stage of the disease, their eyes lose the majority of the necessary cone cells and they risk turning completely blind as a result.

While there is not yet a known treatment to restore cone cells, the scientists have figured out a treatment to trigger activation of dormant glial cells in the retina to restore cone-cell activity.

Taking the discovery one step further, the brainiacs also located the precise genes that can make the dormant glial cells work like cone-photoreceptors.

The results are monumental for the optometry field.
Pexels / Danish Ahmad

These new cone cells effectively fill the gap in the eyes - making up for the once devastating loss of original cone cells in the area.

"We have identified two genes that, when expressed in these dormant cells called Müller cells, can convert them into retinal neurons," explained Camille Boudreau-Pinsonneault, first author of the study and a researcher at the university.

According to the dedicated team of researchers, such results are monumental for the field and their new approach to treatment could one day see doctors able to restore vision loss caused by retinal degenerative disease in humans.

"We may one day be able to take advantage of the cells that are normally present in the retina and stimulate them to regenerate retinal cells lost to pathological conditions and to restore vision," added Ajay David, co-author of the study.

Topics: World News, News, Science, Health, Technology