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Healing


— Science

Anti-microbial hydrogel offers new weapon against drug-resistant bacteria

By - January 30, 2013 1 Picture
Whether it’s in hospitals, restaurant kitchens or our homes, harmful bacteria such as E.coli are a constant concern. Making matters worse is the fact that such bacteria are increasingly developing a resistance to antibiotics. This has led to a number of research projects, which have utilized things such as blue light, cold plasma and ozone to kill germs. One of the latest non-antibiotic bacteria-slayers is a hydrogel developed by IBM Research and the Institute of Bioengineering and Nanotechnology in Singapore. Read More

Gel-coated implants could reverse paralysis caused by nerve damage

When a nerve in the peripheral nervous system is torn or severed, it can take a long time to regenerate – if it does so at all. Depending on the location of the injury, it can leave the affected part of the patient’s body numb and/or paralyzed for years, or even for the rest of their life. Now, however, scientists from Israel’s Tel Aviv University have created a gel and an implant that they claim could vastly aid in the healing of damaged nerves. Read More
— Health and Wellbeing

Vilified free radicals boost tissue healing and regeneration in tadpoles (and perhaps humans)

By - January 16, 2013 2 Pictures
Researchers at the University of Manchester have found that Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) – oxygen-containing free radicals that are commonly believed to be harmful to cells – actually play a vital role in the regeneration of the tails of tadpoles. The finding could have profound implications for the healing and regeneration of human tissue. Read More
— Science

Polymer implants could help heal brain injuries

By - November 27, 2012 1 Picture
Using implants made from porous biocompatible materials, scientists have recently been successful in regrowing things such as teeth, tendons and heart tissue, plus bone and cartilage. The materials act as a sort of nanoscale three-dimensional scaffolding, to which lab-cultivated cells can be added, or that the recipient’s own cells can colonize. Now, a Spanish research team has used the same principle to grow new brain tissue – the technique could ultimately be used to treat victims of brain injuries or strokes. Read More

Dissolvable oral strips developed to treat burnt tongues

If you get a minor burn somewhere on the outside of your body, you can usually help dull the pain and promote healing by applying a piece of gauze and an ointment such as Polysporin. When you scald your tongue on a hot food or drink, however, you can’t exactly put a Band-Aid on it. That said, you may soon be able to apply a soothing medicated strip, instead. Read More
— Science

Temperature-measuring smart sutures monitor wound healing

By - August 28, 2012 1 Picture
Sutures have come along way from the days of silk and catgut, but now they’re poised to make their biggest change in 3,000 years. They’re getting smart. John Rogers, professor of materials science and engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign has invented a “smart” suture that contains ultrathin sensors that can detect when a wound is infected and may one day be able to actively promote healing as well. Read More
— Medical

New silicone plaster promotes wound healing

By - June 7, 2012 2 Pictures
Even the smallest wound is potentially serious, so something as simple as a finger plaster and a little disinfectant can make the difference when it comes to preventing a nasty infection. But a dressing can do more than just keep out germs. That’s the idea behind work of the Laboratory of Thermodynamics in Emerging Technologies (ETH) in Zurich, Switzerland, where Prof. Dimos Poulikakos and his team of engineers and biologists are developing a new plaster that not only protects a wound from infection, it can also accelerate healing through the use of specially contoured silicone that promotes cell migration. Read More
— Health and Wellbeing

Nanocoating leads to better-attached dental implants

By - March 5, 2012 1 Picture
The thought of having titanium screws implanted into one's jawbone is probably pretty unsettling for most of us, but for people who are getting individual teeth replaced, such implants are often required as attachment points for the artificial teeth. Once those screws are in place, patients often have to wait from about four to six months before they can chew solid food, as the bone surrounding the implant heals. Now, however, Swedish scientists have developed a new bioactive nanocoating for the screws, that promises to significantly decrease the required healing time. Read More
— Health and Wellbeing

"Fracture putty" could speed healing of broken bones

By - February 9, 2012 1 Picture
Anyone who has ever broken a bone knows that while receiving the injury itself is quite unpleasant, being laid up for several weeks to even a few months afterwards is also no picnic. Help may be on the way, however. The U.S. Department of Defense is funding a study, to develop fast bone-healing treatments that could be used on soldiers, along with civilians and even animals. Already, scientists have gotten promising results in laboratory tests, using something they call “fracture putty.” Read More
— Medical

Non-surgical procedure repairs severed nerves in minutes

By - February 7, 2012 2 Pictures
Professor George Bittner and his colleagues at the University of Texas at Austin Center for Neuroscience have developed a simple and inexpensive procedure to quickly repair severed peripheral nerves. The team took advantage of a mechanism similar to that which permits many invertebrates to regenerate and repair nerve damage. The new procedure, based on timely application of common chemicals to the severed nerve ends, could help patients to recover nearly full function in days or weeks. Read More
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