Since 2007, Dr. Arditi has been a site Principal Investigator (PI) of the Columbia Presbyterian/Lighthouse International feasibility study of Second Sight Medical Products' Argus II retinal prosthesis. In collaboration with Lucian del Priore, MD and Stephen Tsang, MD (the PIs at Columbia-Presbyterian Hospital), and many others from sites around the world, we have been evaluating a retinal prosthesis for advanced retinitis pigmentosa, invented by Mark Humayun, MD (University of Southern California) that consists of surgically implanted electronics and a 60-electrode stimulating array tacked directly onto the retina in conjunction with an externally worn wearable computer. In the picture at the left, A shows the components of the Argus II device that are worn by the user externally. B illustrates the components that are surgically implanted in and around the user's eye.
In July of 2009, the first and only subject in New York city was implanted with the device, and Dr. Arditi conducted all of the psychophysical testing and training of this subject. Second Sight, in September 2012 received the unanimous approval of a US Food and Drug Administration panel, a crucial step towards approval for limited marketing of this device. Dr. Arditi continues his studies with the subject at Lighthouse International, and also has recently begun studying other visual prosthetic approaches to navigation, wayfinding, and other functional tasks [1,2,3,4]. For more information about this exciting bionic eye project, see this paper. Also see our page on navigation and wayfinding.