Israeli researchers claim to have developed a substance that speeds up the repair of damaged nerves using electricity.
This ultra-thin material – a type of high-tech fabric – can be wrapped around damaged nerves inside the body and allowed light-derived electricity to flow through them after the wound is closed.
Its inventors, from the Technion – the Israel Institute of Technology – in Haifa, tested the substance on mice and documented its effectiveness in the journal nature materials.
This substance speeds nerve repair in rats by 33%, and will now be developed and tested in humans.
After further development, Professor Hemi Rottenberg, one of the inventors, said that it could be used to repair nerves and possibly for temporary cardiac stimulation, that is, to stimulate the heart after surgery. It is expected to be ready for widespread use in humans within three to five years.
“After the peripheral nerves are injured, the nerves grow again, but slowly, and during this time patients can suffer significant damage. Our goal was to speed up this process,” said Rothenberg, of the Technion’s School of Biomedical Engineering. Times of Israel.
“Electrical stimulation appears to help, but it is really only possible when the wound is open – unless we leave the electrical stimulation in the nerves after the wound has closed. This may require problematic operations to remove the device.”
“Our solution consists of a very thin silicone material, which can be wrapped around the nerve when the wound is opened. The wound can then be closed and the material stimulated with light.”
Israel Times. Copyrights.
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