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NNSA labs contribute to bionic eye project

ARGUS ILawrence Livermore, Los Alamos and Sandia national laboratories have contributed to a decade of revolutionary research that has helped create the first ever retinal prosthesis – or bionic eye. The artificial retina, dubbed the Argus II Retinal Prosthesis, has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for blind individuals with end-stage retinitis pigmentosa.

The Argus II Retinal Prosthesis System proves to be an aid to those blinded by the disease retinitis pigmentosa, which can run in families and is estimated by the National Institutes of Health to affect about one in 4,000 people in the United States. Over the ten year lifetime of the project, the Department of Energy has provided $75.2 million for the development of technologies aimed at advancing artificial retinas like the Argus II.

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