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Doctor Says He Can Turn Brown Eyes to Blue

Dr. Gregg Homer, of Stroma Medical in California, claims that his Lumineyes technology uses a laser tuned to a specific frequency to turn brown eyes to blue. His laser removes the brown pigment, or melanin, from the top layer of the iris, and the blue eye color emerges over the following two to three weeks.

The procedure would provide an alternative to those who want blue eyes, but don't want to  use cosmetic contact lenses. However, the procedure is irreversible because the brown tissue cannot regenerate.

Stroma Medical has started limited human testing, but is seeking up to $750,000 to complete the clinical trials. Dr. Homer says the procedure could be available outside the U.S. within 18 months and inside the U.S in three years.

Dr. Homer told KTLA Morning News that thousands of prospective clients had contacted him to express their interest: "They say the eyes are the windows to the soul. A blue eye is not opaque, you can see deeply into it, while a brown eye is very opaque. I think there is something very meaningful about this idea of having open windows to the soul."

The CEO of Stroma Medical, Doug Daniels, admitted he wasn't sure about the concept initially: "I was very sceptical frankly, but I learned a long time ago that all the great ideas start out as blasphemy."

Eye color is normally inherited, however, brown eyes are dominant across the world while blue eyes are a recessive trait. A blue eye pigment doesn't actually exist in nature. Instead, people with blue eyes have a brown pigment, known as melamin, at the back of their irises, but have low concentrations of melanin in the front of their irises.

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This means longer wavelengths of light are absorbed by the dark back of the eye, while the shorter wavelengths are scattered.

The mutation of brown eyes to blue represents neither a positive nor a negative mutation. It is one of several mutations such as hair color, baldness, freckles and beauty spots, which neither increases nor reduces a human’s chance of survival.

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