Cancer treatment has temporarily given people strange night vision
Researchers from the University of Lorraine in France have completed months of work on molecular modeling and determined the exact chemical reaction that generates the effect of “night vision” in the treatment of certain types of cancer. Patients who are prescribed photodynamic therapy using the photosensitive component chlorin E6 report that they suddenly begin to see vague images in the dark. This prevents them from falling asleep, disorients and in rare cases provokes nervous breakdowns.
The cause of this effect was found quickly, but scientists were not able to find the exact mechanism right away. The substance chloride E6 is extracted from algae and is used to rapidly accumulate infrared radiation energy, which is then used to trigger active chemical reactions at the desired point in the body. In particular, to convert ordinary oxygen into its highly reactive singlet version, which kills cancer cells.
The technology of photodynamic therapy itself remains experimental in many ways, and one of its advantages is the safety of E6 chloride for the human body. But as a study by French scientists has shown, the danger is not the substance itself, but the compounds generated by it. In particular, the same overactive oxygen has a powerful effect on the retina of the eye and the protein rhodopsin, forcing it to send electrical signals to the brain. This explains the strange “night vision” – under the influence of chemical reactions, the work of the eyes is disrupted, and they generate hallucinations even in complete darkness.