Rods are the retinal cells that we use to see in dim light conditions. They are much smaller than cones which are used to see during the day and in bright light settings. The Williams lab at the University of Rochester pioneered the use of Adaptive Optics to image and resolve cone photoreceptors, blood vessels, retinal pigment epithelial cells and ganglion cells. They have shown much work in the areas of color vision, light sensitivity and disease detection. But rods were hard to image, and when then were seen there was much jubilance.
Recent work by the Rochester team shows repeatable imaging of rods in the human retina! How did they do it? Better design! Alf Dubra’s design has reduced astigmatism in both the pupil and image planes for better adaptive optics wavefront correction and improved imaging performance. They have two papers (here and here). The first shows a lot of good imaging results. The second one is super for system details.
Ref: OSA News
The Williams Lab is where I did much of my PhD research. So any fun stuff from there is always interesting to me! And an actual online video with interview and all!!! Now that I simply have to put on my blog! :)