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Matthieu Provansal, Katia Marazova, José Alain Sahel, Serge Picaud; Vision Restoration by Optogenetic Therapy and Developments Toward Sonogenetic Therapy. Trans. Vis. Sci. Tech. 2022;11(1):18. doi: https://doi.org/10.1167/tvst.11.1.18.
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After revolutionizing neuroscience, optogenetic therapy has entered successfully in clinical trials for restoring vision to blind people with degenerative eye diseases, such as retinitis pigmentosa. These clinical trials still have to evaluate the visual acuity achieved by patients and to determine if it reaches its theoretical limit extrapolated from ex vivo experiments. Different strategies are developed in parallel to reduce required light levels and improve information processing by targeting various cell types. For patients with vision loss due to optic atrophy, as in the case of glaucoma, optogenetic cortical stimulation is hampered by light absorption and scattering by the brain tissue. By contrast, ultrasound waves can diffuse widely through the dura mater and the brain tissue as indicated by ultrasound imaging. Based on our recent results in rodents, we propose the sonogenetic therapy relying on activation of the mechanosensitive channel as a very promising vision restoration strategy with a suitable spatiotemporal resolution. Genomic approaches may thus provide efficient brain machine interfaces for sight restoration.
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