Eye disease: seeing the way ahead

Ever wondered why routine eye tests are becoming lengthier? The answer to this plus an insight into the latest research into eye disease underway at the University of Aberdeen is the focus of the latest Café Med talk taking place on Monday at 6pm at the Suttie Centre at Foresterhill.

Professor Peter Sharp, Professor of Medical Physics at the University, is giving Monday’s talk which is part of the Café Scientifique series organised by the University’s Public Engagement with Research team. Café Med talks are free and open to all.

Professor Sharp said: “The eyes are the window to the soul, or so it is said. However we, as scientists, are interested in looking at the retina inside the eye since this is where the photoreceptors, essential for vision, are to be found.

“Most of us visit the optician regularly. In addition to the usual challenges of reading eye charts and the discomfort of having air puffed onto our eye lenses, we now find that opticians have large electronic cameras with which they can photograph the retina.

“I will explain why a research group at the University of Aberdeen has been using lasers to image the retina and how they have used the instrument to study the behaviour of blood cells which move through retinal blood vessels.

“I’ll also discuss why have we been teaching computers to interpret retinal images and explain whether they are as good as humans.”

Café Medand the University’s Café Scientifique series are supported by a science engagement grant from the Scottish Government.

Details of this and other series are available at http://www.engagingaberdeen.co.uk/ .