German scientists have created small robots that will help in the treatment of blindness.
A device called "micropropulsors" is 200 times smaller than the thickness of a human hair and uses spiral tails to move around in the eyeball, according to the journal Science Advances.
Miniature robots have shown positive results in eye tests of dead pigs. The inventors believe that the "micropropulsors" are much more effective and faster than eye drops or injections.
Thousands of devices can be released simultaneously into the eyeball and reach the retina at the back of the eye in less than 30 minutes.
Tadpole-like robots can pass through the vitreous body – a transparent substance similar to the gel that fills the space between the lens and the retina in the eye.
The devices carry drugs for glaucoma or diabetic retinopathy and deliver them directly to the center of the disease.
Current treatments for age-related macular degeneration, eye damage, blockage of blood vessels in the eyes and abnormal growth of blood vessels in the eye most often result in eye drops or injections.
And even if small robots still need to be inserted, their effectiveness is much higher, as they can be sent directly to the source of the problem.
The devices are made of nickel and are moved over the eye using a magnetic field created on the outside of the body. Therefore, doctors can easily control their movements and behaviors.
To create micro-thrusters, scientists at the Max Planck Medical Research Institute in Germany used a 3D printer. It should be noted that the robots have not yet been tested on living creatures.
Recall, Australian doctors are working to create contact lenses that accelerate the healing of eye injuries.
As reported by the "Know.ua" portal, American scientists have managed to grow a fragment of the human eye retina in the laboratory.
In addition, "Know.ua" wrote that by 2050 approximately half of the world's population will suffer from myopia.