Non-invasive Laser Photography of the Living Human Retina to Understand Cells
MentorKrzysztof Palczewski, PhD
We will develop an instrument to image the retinal function in patients with macular degeneration Aim 1: We currently have a 2-photon imaging microscope that visualizes retinal function in mice. We will modify our existing microscope for 2PI of the rodent retina for use in humans. Aim 2: We will first confirm the safety of 2-photon Imaging by studying human subjects who have a blind eye and monitoring changes in their eye after imaging. We will then use 2-photon Imaging to study retinal biochemistry in people with macular degeneration.
Two-photon functional imaging of the retina, while used extensively by our group in animals and in vitro, has never been achieved in human retinal imaging. We will produce a first-of-its-class research device to study human retinal disease. We contribute new safety data to make 2-photon imaging practical in human eyes. We will unearth, heretofore, unobtainable information about retinal tissue function in living humans with macular degeneration. We will create a new imaging device that will help us understand common and uncommon blinding diseases non-invasively, open avenues to treatments targeting the early stages of the disease, and ultimately prevent vision loss.