Published: Wed, August 09, 2017
Research | By Jennifer Evans

Brain Injuries Can Be Treated With Just One, New Device

Brain Injuries Can Be Treated With Just One, New Device

Researchers at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center and Ohio State's College of Engineering have developed a new technology, Tissue Nanotransfection, which can generate any cell type of interest for treatment within the patient's own body.

The device has not yet been tested in humans, but it has proved successful with mice and pigs. One week after the application of TNT, vascular vessels reappeared. "This process only takes less than a second and is non-invasive, and then you're off", says Sen.

"With this technology we can convert skin cells into elements of any organ with just one touch", says co-author Chandan Sen. The chip does not stay with you, and the reprogramming of the cell starts.

The revolutionary new technology uses nanochips that can reprogramme skin cells to trick them into regenerating to heal injuries.

Executive Director of The Ohio State University Comprehensive Wound Center and Director of the Ohio State University's Center for Regenerative Medicine & Cell Based Therapies.

In lab experiments, researchers found that just one touch of the TNT completely repaired the injured legs of lab mice over a three-week period by turning the skin cells of the animals into vascular cells.

This breakthrough technology is the first time cells have been reprogrammed in a live body.

"By using our novel nanochip technology, injured or compromised organs can be replaced", the study's co-leader Chandan Sen said.

"This is hard to imagine, but it is achievable, successfully working about 98% of the time". Additionally, this technology does away with the need to use viruses as a delivery system for the new cells.

"It extends the concept known as gene therapy, and it has been around for quite some time", said study collaborator James Lee.

"What's even more exciting is that it not only works on the skin, but on any type of tissue", Sen said. In my lab, we have ongoing research trying to understand the mechanism and do even better. Actually, the Researchers managed to grow brain cells on the skin surface of a mouse, harvest them and then inject them into the injured brain of the mouse.

Scientists said the procedure is non-invasive and does not require a laboratory, meaning it could be used in hospitals and GP surgeries.

Clinical trials are expected to begin next year to test the technology in humans.

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