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Yeast: for Making Bread, Alcohol and Corneas

 |  |  |  |  |  August 31, 2010

That’s right folks, the fungi that make it possible for you to enjoy buns and beer is now also being used to make synthetic corneas, according to a report from Reuters.

synthetic cornea

Scientists put human DNA into genetically-engineered yeast, which in turn produced human protein. The protein was then put in molds to create the artificial cornea, seen above. There’s more info in the video below, but there’s also quite a bit of footage of corneas being sewn onto human eyes. Unless you’re a seasoned doctor, said footage will either be revolting or interesting. You have been warned. Or tempted.

Sharingan! Sorry. Note that this technique, while promising, is still in the testing stage, so don’t take your real corneas for granted. They’re not like teeth that can easily be replaced. Not yet anyway.

[via Reuters]