C2D2 establishment 4a - Objective measures of visual improvement in amblyopia following treatment

Project: Other internal award

Project participant(s)

Department / unit(s)

Description

Amblyopia (lazy eye) is a visual disorder that results in people becoming stereo blind (they cannot see the depth in 3D movies) because one eye is weaker than the other, even when wearing appropriate glasses or contacts. It is surprisingly common, affecting about 3% of the population. It was long thought to be impossible to treat the condition in adults, because their brains did not have the ‘wiring’ for binocular vision. However recently this has been shown not to be true, and several research groups around the world have started to develop ways of treating the condition. A promising method involves playing 3D computer games or watching 3D movies, but with the contrast reduced in the stronger eye so that it doesn’t dominate (suppress) the weaker eye.

Our project has two aims. First, we want to use modern neuroimaging technology (EEG and MRI) to understand what is different in the brains of amblyopes. Then we will see how the responses of the visual areas of the brain change during treatment, to help develop the new therapies. By understanding how these treatments work, we can learn how to improve the vision of over 200 million affected people around the world.

Layman's description

Amblyopia (lazy eye) is a visual disorder that results in people becoming stereo blind (they cannot see the depth in 3D movies) because one eye is weaker than the other, even when wearing appropriate glasses or contacts. It is surprisingly common, affecting about 3% of the population. It was long thought to be impossible to treat the condition in adults, because their brains did not have the ‘wiring’ for binocular vision. However recently this has been shown not to be true, and several research groups around the world have started to develop ways of treating the condition. A promising method involves playing 3D computer games or watching 3D movies, but with the contrast reduced in the stronger eye so that it doesn’t dominate (suppress) the weaker eye.

Our project has two aims. First, we want to use modern neuroimaging technology (EEG and MRI) to understand what is different in the brains of amblyopes. Then we will see how the responses of the visual areas of the brain change during treatment, to help develop the new therapies. By understanding how these treatments work, we can learn how to improve the vision of over 200 million affected people around the world.

Key findings

This work resulted in two new collaborations, one with the Ophthalmology team at Hull Royal Infirmary (investigating childhood amblyopia), and the other with a group of researchers based at Moorfields Eye Hospital in London. We anticipate that these collaborations will bear fruit in the future.
StatusFinished
Effective start/end date1/02/1531/01/17

Impacts

  • Media coverage of Dietary modulation of cortical excitation and inhibition

    Impact: Public Health

Research outputs

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