A man who had been blind in one eye has had his vision near-completely restored thanks to a breakthrough stem cell treatment.
Russell Thurnbull had ammonia sprayed in his eye after trying to break up a fight nearly 15 years ago. The attack damaged tissue in his right cornea, leaving him completely blind in that eye. Thanks to researchers at the North East England Stem Cell Institute, he can now see just as good in his right eye as he can in his left.
In the experiment, scientists extracted stem cells from tissue in his healthy eye, and cultivated them in a solution made from his blood, glucose, insulin, and hydro-cortisone. They then implanted that growth into the cornea in his damaged eye, repairing lost and damaged tissue. His vision was completely restored, and the painful condition he had acquired, Limbal Stem Cell Deficiency, was cured.
This treatment is obviously not a cure for all blindness, but it is a breakthrough demonstration of the effectiveness of stem-cell therapy, and good news to all those who suffer from LSCD, a somewhat common condition among chemical factory workers.