Bloomberg: Flashes of Light Seen by Blind Woman Spur Bionic Eye Hope

An Australian woman blinded by an inherited retina-damaging disease experienced some vision after doctors in Melbourne implanted an electronic device they say may lead to a bionic eye by 2014.

Dianne Ashworth, who has profound vision loss due to retinitis pigmentosa, received the world’s first implantation of an early prototype bionic eye, Bionic Vision Australia, the group undertaking the research, said in a statement today. The implant, attached to the back of Ashworth’s eye, was stimulated to produce images using a computer, the researchers said.

“I didn’t know what to expect,” Ashworth said in the statement. “All of a sudden, I could see a little flash. It was amazing. Every time there was stimulation, there was a different shape that appeared in front of my eye.”…
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