A new device known as tissue nanotransfection (TNT) has the potential to save the lives of car crash victims and deployed soldiers injured on site, reports USA Today.
A TNT is a dime-sized silicone chip that “injects genetic code into skin cells, turning those skin cells into other types of cells required for treating diseased conditions,” said Ohio State University, developer of the device, in a press release.
In lab tests, one touch of TNT completely repaired injured legs of mice over three weeks by turning skin cells into vascular cells. It not only works on skin cells, it can restore any type of tissue, according to Chandan Sen, director of the Center for Regenerative Medicine and Cell-Based Therapies. For example, the technology restored brain function in a mouse who suffered a stroke by growing brain cells on its skin.
This is a breakthrough technology, because it’s the first time cells have been reprogrammed in a live body. Current cell therapy methods are high risk, like those that introduce a virus, and include multiple steps. There are no known side effects to TNT and treatment takes less than a second, Sen said.
“This technology does not require a laboratory or hospital and can actually be executed in the field," “It’s less than 100 grams to carry and will have a long shelf life,” said Sen.
TNT is awaiting FDA approval, but Sen expects it will be tested on humans within the year. (Source: USA Today))
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