Ink that May Restore Sight to Blind People

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A simple retinal prosthesis is being developed in collaboration between Tel Aviv University in Israel and Linköping University in Sweden. Fabricated using cheap and widely-available organic pigments used in printing inks and cosmetics, it consists of tiny pixels like a digital camera sensor on a nanometric scale.

Researchers led by Eric Glowacki, principal investigator of the organic nanocrystals subgroup in the Laboratory of Organic Electronics, Linköping University, have developed a tiny, simple photo active film that converts light impulses into electrical signals. These signals in turn stimulate neurons (nerve cells). The research group has chosen to focus on a particularly pressing application, artificial retinas that may in the future restore sight to blind people.