Optic Nerve Tissue Regeneration
Currently, there is no technology that is able to reverse the optic nerve damage that is caused by glaucoma. The optic nerve damage and retinal ganglion cell (RGC) death associated with glaucoma is due to a pressure buildup in the eyes. Studies have shown that RGC death may be prevented in the central nervous system using alternating electric fields to stimulate neural regrowth. Our team has extended this work to evaluate the potential of repairing a damaged optic nerve through alternating electric field stimulation. We have developed an implantable electrode device in which an electrode cuff is wrapped around the optic nerve of the eye. The electrode device is remotely activated by radio frequency (RF) to stimulate the optic nerve with biphasic square waves. Our novel approach has the potential to restore vision to the millions of Americans who suffer from this neurodegenerative disease.