A new gene therapy study in mice is restoring lost vision and allowing them to detect objects, like a predator, when previously they could not.
Researchers placed rhodopsin, a human gene used by cells to detect light, in the eye behind the damaged rods and cones of blind mice. This gave the receptor cells bipolar and ganglion, normally responsible for sending signals to the brain, the ability to detect light non their own. The result restored vision to the mice. It was noted that the restored vision was not as great as sighted mice, but they were able to detect objects apart quite well. The team hopes to be in human trials in five years.