Stem-cell treatment restores sight to blind man


An experimental stem-cell treatment has restored the sight of a man blinded by the degeneration of his retinal cells. The man, who is taking part in a trial examining the safety of using human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) to reverse two common causes of blindness, can now see well enough to be allowed to drive.

People undergoing treatment had reported modest improvements in vision earlier in the trial, which began in 2011, but this individual has made especially dramatic progress. The vision in his affected eye went from 20/400 – essentially blind – to 20/40, which is considered sighted.

"There's a guy walking around who was blind, but now can see," says Gary Rabin, chief executive officer of Advanced Cell Technology, the company in Marlborough, Massachusetts that devised the treatment. "With that sort of vision, you can have a driver's licence."

Written By: Andy Coghlan
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  1. Religious fanatic: Its a miracle!

    Scientist: No its not because we understand exactly how it happened and can replicate it at will

    Religious fanatic: But [insert god’s name here] guided your research

    Scientist facepalms himself unconscious.

  2. The irreducibly complex eye that could only have been created ‘faulty’ by a god has now been repaired by the ingenuity of an ascended ape.

    Religios, time to dismantle your barricade of utter stupidity once again and move your knavery further downfield out of range of our ordnance.

  3. Two things have amazed me this week: this, and the girl with bionic hands.

    And it’s only Tuesday.

  4. The mere hint that religious types who obstruct stem cell research would be denied access to this sort of treatment……cause for thought. Set your watches. Those who oppose blood transfusions come to mind. Are there people who refuse to receive donated organs ?

  5. Science never sleeps. When I read of advances such as this I can only marvel at human ingenuity. It is so exciting it makes a grown man giggle.

  6. I’m sat in my electric car, connected to the internet, reading about stem cells restoring a blind mans sight. We truly are living in the future now! Time to go away religious cretins…

  7. They (creationists) stand perched atop their sandcastles watching the impending tide come in. Won’t be long now until those castles made of sand melt into the sea (thanks JIMI.)….

    More of their myth erodes every moment.

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