Available Technology

A Fundus Photo-Stimulation System and Method

Available for licensing and commercial development is an optical system which permits targeted photo-stimulation of the retina by positioning the stimulus location under visual guidance through a fundus camera. The system is designed to elicit, under direct infra-red visual control of stimulus size and position in the retina, electroretinograms (ERGs) in response to photo-stimulation from selected regions of the retina, as well as to present small light stimuli to a selected area to explore visual sensitivity properties. For example, the detected ERGs can be the basis for diagnosing or characterizing patient retina with early stage retinal disease versus healthy retina from the opposite eye. The system can be mounted on commercially available fundus cameras that have infra-red capabilities (or would accept infra-red bandpass filtering of their retinal illumination output) and will accept a near IR CCD camera connected to a TV mounted on the photographic-camera port. The optical system can comprise a targeting light path originating from a deep red laser and a stimulus light path originating from a Xenon strobe lamp. Both light paths are brought into collinear alignment by a beam splitter. The light paths are transmitted to the eye through an adjustable turning mirror and a focusing lens. A beam splitter in front of the fundus camera objective lens merges the optical path of the fundus camera with that of the targeting optical path and the stimulus light path. The merged beams are brought to a focus at or close to the lens of the eye. A movable aperture is interposed on the collinear beams and imaged on the retina such that its lateral position and size can be adjusted by the operator to select the retinal area to be photo-stimulated. This arrangement ensures that the stimulating light flashes illuminate the same field as was selected using the deep red targeting laser. This system permits projection of repeatable visible-light flashes with variable size and location onto the retina.
Patent Abstract: 
Available for licensing and commercial development is an optical system which permits targeted photo-stimulation of the retina by positioning the stimulus location under visual guidance through a fundus camera. The system is designed to elicit, under direct infra-red visual control of stimulus size and position in the retina, electroretinograms (ERGs) in response to photo-stimulation from selected regions of the retina, as well as to present small light stimuli to a selected area to explore visual sensitivity properties. For example, the detected ERGs can be the basis for diagnosing or characterizing patient retina with early stage retinal disease versus healthy retina from the opposite eye. The system can be mounted on commercially available fundus cameras that have infra-red capabilities (or would accept infra-red bandpass filtering of their retinal illumination output) and will accept a near IR CCD camera connected to a TV mounted on the photographic-camera port. The optical system can comprise a targeting light path originating from a deep red laser and a stimulus light path originating from a Xenon strobe lamp. Both light paths are brought into collinear alignment by a beam splitter. The light paths are transmitted to the eye through an adjustable turning mirror and a focusing lens. A beam splitter in front of the fundus camera objective lens merges the optical path of the fundus camera with that of the targeting optical path and the stimulus light path. The merged beams are brought to a focus at or close to the lens of the eye. A movable aperture is interposed on the collinear beams and imaged on the retina such that its lateral position and size can be adjusted by the operator to select the retinal area to be photo-stimulated. This arrangement ensures that the stimulating light flashes illuminate the same field as was selected using the deep red targeting laser. This system permits projection of repeatable visible-light flashes with variable size and location onto the retina.
applications: 
Inventors: 
Paul Smith
Patent Number: 
12/180,877
Internal Laboratory Ref #: 
E-279-2006/0
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