Characterising Immune Cell Function in the Retina with Advanced Imaging


  • Dr Colin Chu

    University College London, United Kingdom

Project summary

The immune system affects almost every aspect of health and disease. Human immunology research is focussing on biopsies but these provide only single snapshots of highly dynamic and changeable processes. Here we will use the eye to study immune responses repeatedly and non-invasively in live patients across time. It is an ideal organ for taking images deep inside it, as most parts are transparent. We recently discovered how to video record immune cells inside the eyes of live mice, without any need to inject any dyes or drugs using a technique called adaptive optics, which can also be used in humans. We will apply this approach to patients with inflammation inside the eye (uveitis) and interpret the images using a new microscope procedure on human donor eyes. This could improve the diagnosis and monitoring of eye diseases, but also be used to study fundamental processes relevant to the whole body.