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Alan Horsager, Scott H. Greenwald, James D. Weiland, Mark S. Humayun, Robert J. Greenberg, Matthew J. McMahon, Geoffrey M. Boynton, Ione Fine; Predicting Visual Sensitivity in Retinal Prosthesis Patients. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2009;50(4):1483-1491. doi: 10.1167/iovs.08-2595.
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purpose. With the long-term goal of restoring functional vision in patients with retinal degenerative diseases, the eyes of blind human subjects were implanted chronically with epiretinal prostheses consisting of two-dimensional electrode arrays that directly stimulated cells of the neural retina.
methods. Psychophysical techniques were used to measure the brightness of electrically generated percepts on single electrodes using a variety of electrical stimulation patterns.
results. It was possible to predict the sensitivity of the human visual system to a wide variety of retinal electrical stimulation patterns using a simple and biologically plausible model.
conclusions. This is the first study to demonstrate that, on the single-electrode level, retinal electrical stimulation in humans can produce visual qualia that are predictable using a quantitative model, a prerequisite for a successful retinal prosthesis. (ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT00279500.)
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