Thursday, 07 Apr, 2011 Science

Researchers Working on Rubber Stamps that Quickly Heal Wounds Using Silver


Researchers from the University of Wisconsin-Madison are working on a special rubber sticker that makes use of new silver nanotech to heal skin wounds faster.

Although today scientists are aware of the anti-bacterial qualities of silver, the problem that they still have to solve lies in getting the right dosage. This is because in high concentrations silver is quite toxic.

The team of researchers has managed to improve the delivering of silver nanoparticles onto skin. These are delivered in a layer that is only a couple of molecules thick. In such a way they create a perfect barrier without causing overdose and destroying skin cells.

It would be interesting to note that scientists decided to borrow a technique that for a long time has been used to introduce ink in ultra-thin layers. They mixed polyelectrolyte multilayer coating with beads of silver nanoparticles and brought them together on a rubber stamp that can then be placed on wounds.

During the tests researchers used a cadaver skin on which they placed common skin bacteria like staphylococcus epidermidis and pseudomonas aeruginosa that can lead to infections. After applying the "healing" rubber stamp they noticed that in about 12 hours 99.999 percent of the bacteria were killed. In addition, they found that the bacteria-defeating effect continued to take place another 48 hours.

Currently researchers are experimenting on mice and pigs to see if the treatment doesn't interfere with normal wound-healing, reports FastCompany.

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