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'Spray-On Skin' Heals Leg Ulcers

A new clinical trial has verified the efficacy of a new form of 'spray-on skin' containing skin cells and a protein-clotting solution.


('Spray-on skin' helps heal venous leg ulcers)

A phase 2 study was performed to compare the skin spray with conventional treatments. It included 228 adults from 28 different centers in the US and Canada. Each one had up to three skin ulcers measuring 2 to 12 square centimeters which had persisted for 6 to 104 weeks. The spray itself is comprised of two types of skin cells collected from the foreskin of babies: keratinocytes and fibroblasts, the cell types that become dysfunctional in chronic skin ulcers. These neonatal keratinocytes and fibroblasts are dosed with radiation shortly after being collected to stop them from growing. Mixed in is a protein-clotting solution that works with the cells to create a self-assembling matrix that promotes healing.

The double-blind, randomized study demonstrated that venous leg ulcers can be healed with the 'spray-on skin' solution, applied every fourteen days.

SF fans were introduced to the idea of spray-on skin a half-century ago in the works of Philip K. Dick. In his 1960 story Dr. Futurity, he wrote about art-derm:

Over her lacerated right shoulder he sprayed art-derm; it sealed off the open wound, halted bleeding, and prohibited infection.

Robert Heinlein thought about this idea even earlier. In his 1951 novel The Puppet Masters, he wrote about surrogate skin that could be sprayed onto hands with minor burns.

"Now flex the fingers of your right hand, please."

I flexed them, while she helped the doctor spray on surrogate skin. "Wear gloves for rough work," the doctor cautioned, "and come back next week..."

From The Lancet via Singularity Hub via Frolix_8.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 9/12/2012)

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