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Retinas 'develop differently' in deaf people

Retinas 'develop differently' in deaf people
2nd June 2011

Deaf people, who may use assisted living, have better vision due to the fact their retinas develop differently, a study has indicated.

Research published in journal PLoS ONE found that the retinas of adults who are born deaf or experience onset of the condition within the first year of life develop differently to those with hearing abilities. This enhances the peripheral vision.

It was also found that deaf people have more neurones transmitting visual information than other people.

Research leader Dr Charlotte Codina, of the University of Sheffield, said: "The retina has been highly doubted previously as being able to change to this degree, so these results which show an adaptation to the retina in the deaf really challenge previous thinking."

This follows news that an injection is able to treat sudden hearing loss as well as the medication currently prescribed, which is taken orally, according to a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Written by Angela Newbury