90  The inverse retina

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The light-sensitive cells in the human eye are located beneath two layers of nerve cells. It appeared that the light would therefore be weakened by the nerve cells. An intelligent creator, it was thought, would have used a more efficient construction. However, it then turned out that the so-called Muellerian cells, hitherto considered to have a supporting function only, also function as highly efficient light conductors that transmit the light between the nerve cells to the light-sensitive cells in the retina. Since the light-sensitive cells lie directly above the blood vessels, they are cooled better and can be provided with energy in a more efficient manner.

In the human eye, the surface layers of the retina contain nerve cells, beneath which lie the light-sensitive rods and cones. Since the nerve cells lie above the rods and cones, they would under normal circumstances appear to weaken the light, thus interfering with vision. For this reason, evolutionary researchers claimed that this arrangement could not possibly have been conceived by an intelligent creator.

Recent research results obtained at the Paul Flechsig Brain Research Institute at the University of Leipzig have now shown that light is not scattered or lost at all in the human eye. So-called Muellerian cells conduct the light from the front surface of the retina to the light-sensitive cells embedded in the back of the retina, whereby their function is similar to that of a fibre optic cable. The light is thus transmitted without losing intensity between the nerve cells through to the light-sensitive cells. The conical shape of the Muellerian cells collects light instead of scattering it. What this means is that our vision is optimized by just this specific arrangement of nerve cells, Muellerian cells, rods and cones (1).

It therefore makes sense that the light-sensitive cells lie beneath the others because they require the most energy, of which they are ensured an optimum supply by their location right above the blood vessels. Another factor is that the blood vessels also cool the light-sensitive cells, preventing damage to the retina that could otherwise be caused by infrared radiation (2). In squids the cells are arranged in the opposite order because these animals live in cool water. In this case, it does make sense to position the light-sensitive cells in the top layer, since the eyeball is cooled by the water (3).

To sum up, the different designs of human and squid eyes ensure optimum vision for both creatures and provide clear evidence of an intelligent and consummate creator of these two systems.

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(1) Kristian Franze, et al. Müller cells are living optical fibres in the vertebrate retina, herausgegeben von Luke Lee, University of California, Berkeley, CA, and vom wissenschaftlichen Beirat am 27. März 2007 angenommen, http://www.pnas.org/cgi/content/short/104/20/8287.
(2) Sylvia Baker, Seeing and believing, Genesis Agendum, 2004. page 4.
(3) Willian A. Dembski and J.M. Kushiner, Signs of Intelligence, Bazos Press, 2002, page 216.

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