Pixium Vision has announced its first successful human implantation of a wireless sub-retinal implant in a patient with atrophic dry age-related macular degeneration (AMD). So far, three patients have been implanted with the device, and results are promising.
As reported here in October 2017, the implant, called PRIMA, acts like a tiny solar panel that is powered by pulsed near-infrared light through a miniaturized projector integrated along with a mini-camera into a pair of glasses. PRIMA is designed to initially treat atrophic dry AMD, and at a later stage, retinitis pigmentosa (RP).
The PRIMA Bionic Vision System’s successful activation “was achieved one-month post implantation as per the protocol,” stated Dr. Le Mer, principal investigator of the study. “Following activation, the patient reported a first perception of light from the central zone where there was none previously. The patient now proceeds to the important re-education phase to learn to interpret the elicited light signals and evaluate the performance of the PRIMA system.”
The researchers still face important challenges, most important of which is improving resolution from the current level of 20/200 to 20/40. The lab expects to publish a new design for achieving that resolution later in 2018.
The feasibility clinical study in France is being conducted at Fondation Ophtalmologique Rothschild and Hôpital des Quinze-Vingt in Paris. Institutions working in close collaboration are the Institut de la Vision in Paris, the Hansen Experimental Physics Laboratory at Stanford University, Moorfields Eye Hospital in London, and Institute of Ocular Microsurgery (IMO) in Barcelona. Pixium is looking forward to completing the first phase in France and starting an FDA approved feasibility study in the U.S.
For more information about PRIMA, visit: www.pixium-vision.com
To read about all research and developments related to dry AMD, visit A Guide to Research In Dry AMD on this site.