A team of adventurous biohackers have successfully played with an interesting type of chlorophyll, called Chlorin e6 by putting it in their eyes… and the result? Well, they kind of obtained night vision.
Say what? Chlorin e6 is a chlorophyll analog that is found in deep-sea fish, and has been used to treat night blindness in humans (patent). There’s actually lots of research done with the substance, and it has even been used to treat different cancers — but most of the research was performed on lab rats.
So the team decided to take the next step — [Gabriel Licina] volunteered, and they squirted 50uL of e6 into his wide-stretched eyes. It kicks in after about an hour, so they headed outside at night to test his vision capabilities. They started by identifying basic shapes at 10 meters away, no larger than the size of his hand. Then they tried even larger distances. They had people stand at a tree line in different places, and [Gabriel] standing 50 meters away was able to point them out. The control group could barely identify them even a third of the time.
They’ve published a research paper on their findings, and it’s quite the interesting read. Perhaps in the future this can be manufactured in eye drop form for special use cases like hunting, military, or even search and rescue.