Summary: Researchers use nanotech to enhance vision in mice, enabling them to see infrared light as well as visible light.
Source: Cell Press.
Mice with vision enhanced by nanotechnology were able to see infrared light as well as visible light, reports a study published February 28 in the journal Cell. A single injection of nanoparticles in the mice’s eyes bestowed infrared vision for up to 10 weeks with minimal side effects, allowing them to see infrared light even during the day and with enough specificity to distinguish between different shapes. These findings could lead to advancements in human infrared vision technologies, including potential applications in civilian encryption, security, and military operations.
Humans and other mammals are limited to seeing a range of wavelengths of light called visible light, which includes the wavelengths of the rainbow. But infrared radiation, which has a longer wavelength, is all around us. People, animals and objects emit infrared light as they give off heat, and objects can also reflect infrared light.
“The visible light that can be perceived by human’s natural vision occupies just a very small fraction of the electromagnetic spectrum,” says senior author Tian Xue of the University of Science and Technology of China. “Electromagnetic waves longer or shorter than visible light carry lots of information.”
A multidisciplinary group of scientists led by Xue and Jin Bao at the University of Science and Technology of China as well as Gang Han at the University of Massachusetts Medical School, developed the nanotechnology to work with the eye’s existing structures.
“When light enters the eye and hits the retina, the rods and cones–or photoreceptor cells–absorb the photons with visible light wavelengths and send corresponding electric signals to the brain,” says Han. “Because infrared wavelengths are too long to be absorbed by photoreceptors, we are not able to perceive them.”
In this study, the scientists made nanoparticles that can anchor tightly to photoreceptor cells and act as tiny infrared light transducers. When infrared light hits the retina, the nanoparticles capture the longer infrared wavelengths and emit shorter wavelengths within the visible light range. The nearby rod or cone then absorbs the shorter wavelength and sends a normal signal to the brain, as if visible light had hit the retina.
Image Credit: 123RF
Thanks to Heinz V. Hoenen. Follow him on twitter: @HeinzVHoenen
News This Week
Inventors and scientists have been continuously working towards reducing the size of technological components. Room-sized computers to laptops that are slimmer than a pane of glass? It’s done. Huge bulky telephones to smartphones that [...]
You have witnessed a variety of nano-devices that were designed for tasks including delivering medicines within the body. All of them used to move in a variety of ways. However, the latest nano-device is [...]
Netra Rajesh is an undergraduate Engineering Science student specializing in Biomedical Systems Engineering. She is currently on her Professional Experience Year (PEY) at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology where her research lies at the [...]
Nearly half of the companies in Europe that call themselves AI start-ups don't in fact use artificial intelligence, a new report found. The research, published Tuesday by London-based venture capital firm MMC Ventures, found [...]
A new quantum sensor developed by researchers at the University of Waterloo's Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) has proven it can outperform existing technologies and promises significant advancements in long-range 3D imaging and monitoring [...]
Summary: Researchers use nanotech to enhance vision in mice, enabling them to see infrared light as well as visible light. Source: Cell Press. Mice with vision enhanced by nanotechnology were able to see infrared [...]
Immune Aspects of Biopharmaceuticals and Nanomedicines Available from CRC Press 1st Edition Raj Bawa, Janos Szebeni, Thomas J Webster, Gerald F. Audette The enormous advances in the immunology of biotherapeutics and nanomedicines in the [...]
Artificial Intelligence - Ethics, Governance and Policy Challenges by Andrea Renda and CEPS Think Tank released. About the report: CEPS is launching a Task Force to try to bring back the AI debate to [...]
The Nanofacturing consortium has worked on a pan-European nanopharmaceutical project to develop new manufacturing methods and improve supply chain co-ordination to advance treatments for rare cancers, autoimmune diseases and viral infections. The Nanofacturing collaboration [...]
You know those little motes or floaters you that you sometimes see moving in your vision? Well, someday very soon, those could be robots. An international team of medical researchers has unveiled a new [...]
Scientists at the Helmholtz Zentrum München, a partner in the German Center for Lung Research, have presented a new imaging method in the scientific journal ACS Nano ("Three-Dimensional Quantitative Co-Mapping of Pulmonary Morphology and [...]
Note: This videoblog is in German. It was produced by the Institute of Art & Art Theory of the University of Cologne. Humanity faces epochal challenges in the age of digitization. In particular, [...]
Nanoscale drug-delivery capsules that release their therapeutic cargo when triggered by a temperature change could boost the efficacy and reduce the side effects of many drugs. Researchers at RIKEN have combined lipids and peptides [...]