A senior Australian ophthymologist has described how she was searching for a cure to her eye problem when she began a study on using ophthalmic implants.
Dr Elizabeth McRae, who is a member of the Royal Australasian College of Ophthalmology in Melbourne, said she was looking to help her fellow surgeons by finding ways to help patients with vision loss.
“I was really looking for some way to make it better, improve the patient’s experience,” Dr McRaa said.
I was thinking, what could be better than this?
She said she had a few options when she came across a study published in Nature in February that examined the efficacy of a synthetic eye implant.
“[The researchers] looked at how the implant made the patients feel and whether it could be used as a safe and effective treatment,” Dr MacRae said.
“It looked at the safety of using the implant in the context of a patient’s eye conditions.”
Dr McRao said she and her team had been working on the implant since late 2014.
It was initially developed as a way of treating corneal polyps.
While it had some limited success in clinical trials, Dr McLaure said she thought the technology would be beneficial for other conditions, including diabetic eye conditions, cystic fibrosis and other inflammatory eye diseases.
Her team had recently received a grant from the Australian government to investigate the safety and efficacy of the synthetic eye.
Dr McLao said the researchers had tested the implants and found they were safe and reliable.
She and her colleagues had also started a new company, Ophthalmic Technology Solutions, to work on improving the implant’s performance.
Dr MacRao’s interest in synthetic implants led her to ask a team of scientists to investigate how to make a better version.
The researchers, led by Dr David Schuur, an associate professor of ophthalmosciences at the University of Melbourne, decided to investigate using ocular tissue from the eye itself.
Dr Schuor said they wanted to create a synthetic implant that was able to better absorb light and capture more of the light, so that it could better capture the eye’s natural colour and provide a better image of the eye.
He said the team began by studying how to extract the eye tissue from a patient who had recently had a tear in their cornea.
Dr Swann said they had been able to create an implant that contained 100 per cent eye tissue, and then used that tissue to create artificial eye tissue in the lab.
They then tested that synthetic eye and found it was much more effective than the human eye.
The research has been ongoing for the last two years.
Since their initial success, Dr Swann and his colleagues have been working with the Royal Society of Australia to try and make the device safer.
“Our ultimate goal is to make this technology available to the public,” he said.”[It’s] a really exciting area and it’s really interesting to work with the RSOA in a really big way.”
Dr Swanna said he hoped that the research would also help in developing a safer and more effective implant.
“The more that we can make the implant safer, the better it is going to be for patients,” Dr Swanna added.
Ophthalmologists in Australia have been looking at ways to use synthetic eye implants to improve their patient outcomes.
In Australia, the Federal Government recently gave funding to the Australian Eye Centre to develop the technology, and in October last year, it released the results of a pilot trial of the implant on two patients.
One patient who was using the artificial eye for 20 days had a reduction in the amount of light they could get from the artificial lens, while the other patient who underwent the implant for 20 minutes had a significant improvement in her vision.
Dr Daryll Nelms, a professor of orthopedic surgery at the Royal Melbourne Hospital, said that while there was a lot of interest in developing synthetic eye devices, there was still a lot to be done.
This is a new technology that’s being developed by a lot more people in the country than we’re seeing at the moment, he said.””
The problem is we have very limited resources to go and find the best way to use this technology.
“We’re looking at getting more and more money from the government to fund this and we’re working towards that.”
Dr Nelts said the RSI is a small team of people working to get the technology approved for commercialisation.
“At the moment we’re a very small team, but we’re doing very well, and it will take a long time for this technology to be commercially available,” he added.
“So that’s why it