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A legally-blind man has regained his sight after receiving an artificial cornea implant, and is now able to read text and recognise family members.
Jamal Furani, 78, received an implant called the KPro, which was integrated directed into the eyewall in a one-hour surgery on 11 January.
The procedure - which was the first successful implant of its kind - was carried out by Professor Irit Bahar, the head of the ophthalmology department at Rabin Medical Center in Petah Tikva, Israel.
Furani, from Haifa, received the CorNeat KPro, which is an artificial cornea or keratoprosthesis.
According to its website, it provides a 'long-lasting medical solution for corneal blindness, pathology and injury'.
"The CorNeat KPro implant is a patented synthetic cornea utilizing advanced cell technology to integrate artificial optics within resident ocular tissue," it says.
"It is produced using nanoscale chemical engineering, which stimulates cellular growth."
While synthetic cornea implant surgeries existed before, they were often seen as a last resort due to the complexity of the procedure.
CorNeat's implant, however, is billed as a 'revolutionary innovation' as is it much more simple, and requires less surgery.
"Unlike current procedures requiring delicate suturing of donor tissue to the patient's native cornea, a process which can only be performed by very skilled and thoroughly trained specialists, the CorNeat KPro snaps into the patient's trephined cornea and is then sutured to the eye using three non-degradable sutures," CorNeat explains.
"The process itself minimizes the time the eye is trephined and open (also known as 'open sky') to less than one minute - significantly reducing the risks involved."
Dr. Gilad Litvin, co-founder of CorNeat, said: "After years of hard work, seeing a colleague implant the CorNeatKPro with ease and witnessing a fellow human being regain his sight the following day was electrifying and emotionally moving, there were a lot of tears in the room.
"This is an extremely important milestone for CorNeat Vision, key in our journey to enable people around the world to fully enjoy their vision potential.
"I am grateful and honored to work with an outstanding group of people whose hard work, diligence and creativity, made this moment possible."
Currently, there are at least 10 more patients in line for CorNeat's trial in Israel, along with others in Canada, the United States, France and the Netherlands.
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