Engineers Make Injectable Tissues a Reality
A simple injection that can help regrow damaged tissue has long been the dream of physicians and patients alike. A new study from researchers moves that dream closer to reality with a device that makes encapsulating cells much faster, cheaper and more effective.
The idea of injecting different kinds of tissue cells is not a new one.It’s an enticing concept because by introducing cells into damaged tissue, we can supercharge the body’s own processes to regrow and repair an injury.
The problem is that cells on their own are delicate and tend not to survive when injected directly into the body. It turns out that to ensure cell survival, they need to be encased in a coating that protects them from physical damage and from the body’s own immune system.
They have solved that problem by developing an automated encapsulation device that encases many cells in a microgel using a specialized blue laser and purifies them to produce a clean useable sample in just a few minutes.