Repairing major damage to the derma is a difficult problem facing plastic surgeons. But now researchers at Linköping University have hit upon a highly promising method. By injecting tiny balls of gelatin, they have managed to get various types of cells to grow spontaneously in the areas where new tissue needs to be generated.
Instead of moving skin from other parts of the body or operating in prostheses of non-biological material, it is becoming more and more common for plastic surgeons to cultivate the patient’s own cells to make repairs. In burn injuries, for example, derma cells are cultivated from epithelium cells and then grow onto the surface of the wound.
But to go deeper, other methods are called for. The research team at Linköping University has studied various ways to cultivate the cell type needed in a matrix, a “scaffolding,” and then to apply it to the body. The best results were attained using porous spheres of micro format (a few hundredths of a millimeter in diameter) consisting of gelatin-a substance that occurs naturally in the human body. (Images are available)
Åke Hjelm | alfa
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