Researchers have succeeded in growing light-sensing eye cells from human skin cells, opening the possibility of restoring sight to patients blinded by certain diseases.

Researchers at the University of Wisconsin have grown retinal cells from skin cells, a development that could be used to treat degenerative eye diseases.

A number of genetic disorders involve the degeneration of the retina, the light-sensitive cells at the back of the eye. The disorders cause the cells to die, and vision is gradually lost, resulting in blindness.

The researchers manipulated human skin cells to act like embryonic stem cells, which can be coaxed to grow into any tissue in the body. The development suggests that doctors may someday be able to repair damage to the retina with new cells generated from the patient’s own skin. Read the full article from Voice of America.