Investigators at Tel Aviv University, the Hebrew University of Jerusalem Centres for Nanoscience and Nanotechnology and Newcastle University in UK, tested the film with a chick retina that normally does not respond to light.
They found that the film absorbed light and, in response, sparked neuronal activity.
In comparison with other technologies, the researchers conclude theirs is more durable, flexible and efficient, as well as better able to stimulate neurons.
Patients with one type of eye disorder called age-related macular degeneration (AMD), for example, could potentially benefit from such a device, researchers said.
AMD usually affects people aged 60 or older who have damage to a specific part of the retina, limiting their vision.
Scientists are trying different approaches to develop an implant that can 'see' light and send visual signals to a person's brain, countering the effects of AMD and related vision disorders.
But many attempts so far use metallic parts, cumbersome wiring or have low resolution.
Researchers combined semiconductor nanorods and carbon nanotubes to create a wireless, light-sensitive, flexible film that could potentially act in the place of a damaged retina.
The study was published in American Chemical Society (ACS)'s journal Nano Letters.

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