As we get older we hope that all of our faculties and senses will remain in working order for as long as they can. We know that we will “slow down” but we trust that we will continue to be able to do at least the simple things that give us pleasure, such as reading, watching the television and watching the grandchildren get into mischief. Which is why one of the most worrying things that can affect people as they get older is failing eyesight. The most common cause of sight loss in the UK is age-related macular degeneration (AMD), which can lead to a rapid loss of central (reading) vision. Therefore, it was good news to recently see that clinical research at Moorfields Eye Hospital in London has led to some AMD-suffering patients regaining their reading vision after receiving a new treatment derived from stem cells1. Apparently there are two types of AMD – “wet” and “dry” – and this research has focused on the “wet” type (although it is hoped to treat “dry” AMD in the future).
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