I would like to thank Victor Pikov, a neurophysiologist and biomedical engineer at Huntington Medical Research Institutes (HMRI) for drawing my attention to his NeurotechZone Blog that has a really fascinating post on the manufacturing of the next generation of artificial retina, the Argus™ 111, by the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL).
If you have an interest in this area, then Victor is also co-chair of 3rd International Conference on Neuroprosthetic Devices (ICNPD-2011) to be held in Sydney from November 25-26, 2011. Further information can be found on NeuroTechZone.
Second Sight Medical Products recently obtained a CE mark and European Market Approval for the Argus™ II system that incorporates 60 electrodes into the retinal prosthesis.
However the next generation of artificial retina, the Argus™ III is already in development. It has 200 electrodes – a quantum leap forwards. It’s hard not believe that an array that is four times as densely packed with sensors, will not provide improved vision.
Second Sight will no doubt be planning clinical trials for Argus™ III and it sounds like it will provide a further leap forward in the technology to restore some sense of vision to patients who have lost their sight through age-related macular degeneration (AMD) or retinitis pigmentosa (RP).
I have taken the liberty of embedding below, the excellent YouTube video that Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) have produced about their manufacturing of the Argus™ III artificial retina. It is well worth watching!