Researchers at the University of Massachusetts School of Medicine tried to give mice the ability to perceive light in the infrared spectrum. And they did it, however, the effect so far turned out to be temporary. Together with colleagues from the University of Science and Technology of China, they created eye drops with light converters.
Scientists have managed to create a kind of nano-receivers based on lectin proteins that react to radiation in the infrared part of the spectrum. And they convert it into green light, with a different wavelength, which is already located in the visible part, and therefore is captured by photoreceptors in the ordinary eye. All that was left was to place the nanoparticles in the liquid and instill them into the eyes of the experimental mice - the light converters "adhered" to the photoreceptor cells and they gained the ability to react to infrared light.
The most important thing in this experiment was that after the addition of nanoparticles in rodents, the characteristics of ordinary vision did not change, nor did it deteriorate. And two weeks after the experiment, all foreign protein structures were destroyed without a trace. At the same time, the mice did not receive full-fledged night vision, they only reacted to near infrared radiation. This is similar to magical effects from computer games, when a character drinks a potion and for the duration of its action begins to notice objects hidden in the darkness.
Now scientists are faced with a more difficult task - they want to understand what exactly mice see under the influence of these drops. How does their brain perceive, interpret images that, by default, cannot know anything about? And is it possible to apply this technology to create medicinal preparations that are already suitable for humans?