Scientists have developed a device that electronically stimulates tear production, which will offer hope to sufferers of dry eye syndrome, one of the most common eye diseases in the world.
The device, 16 mm long, 3-4 mm wide and 1-2 mm thick, was implanted beneath the inferior lacrimal gland in rabbit eyes. It was activated wirelessly, and shown to increasing the generation of tears by nearly 57%.
The results are published today, Dec. 11, 2015, in the Journal of Neural Engineering.
“I’ve been working on electro-neural interfaces for about a decade, but the idea to stimulate lacrimal gland for tear production came from my postdoctoral fellow, Michael Ackermann.” Says Professor Daniel Palanker, an author on the study, from Stanford University.