Essays on Science and SocietyMOLECULAR MEDICINE

Engineering near-infrared vision

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Science  20 Nov 2020:
Vol. 370, Issue 6519, pp. 925
DOI: 10.1126/science.abf1710

Summary

Photoreceptor degeneration, including age-related macular degeneration and retinitis pigmentosa, is a leading cause of blindness worldwide. Repair of retinal neurons by optogenetics—a technology that sensitizes neurons to light through the transfer of genes for light-sensitive proteins of microbial origin (1, 2)—has entered clinical trials (3, 4). Trials began in 2018 in patients with advanced retinitis pigmentosa and minimal remaining vision (4).

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