Michael Gilhooley is a clinical lecturer in the department of Genetics, Institute of Ophthalmology University College London and Moorfields Eye Hospital. His research interests include the development of novel therapies for inherited retinal degenerations (optogenetics) and inherited optic neuropathies.
This session will introduce the technique of optogenetics and its potential for development into a treatment for IRDs. Optogenetics is the process of expressing light sensitive proteins in cells, such as these surviving cells in the retina, to allow them to react to light independently. It has recently been used for the first time to return some vision to a patient with IRD in Paris as reported in the BBC News.