Navigation Links
Swell gel could bring relief to back pain sufferers

Scientists at The University of Manchester believe injections of tiny sponge-like particles could provide an alternative to major surgery in the treatment of chronic lower back pain.

Dr Brian Saunders from The School of Materials and Professor Tony Freemont from The Faculty of Medical and Human Sciences have developed tiny gel particles that swell and stiffen when injected into a damaged area.

Investigations have revealed that degenerated animal intervertebral discs containing the injected 'microgels' regain their mechanical properties.

This development opens up the possibility of human patients being able to regain full mobility and flexibility after receiving spinal injections.

This would compare favourably with spinal fusion - a major surgical procedure with considerable recovery time for the patient, resulting in a significant loss of mobility at the fused and adjacent discs.

Degeneration of intervertebral discs causes holes in the load-bearing tissue of the disc, decreasing disc height and resulting in pain.

The microgel particles the research team have developed are like 'smart sponges' when dispersed in water.

The material is a fluid at a low pH - in other words, a low level of acidity - and can be injected through a syringe. It changes to a stiff gel at physiological pH values - that is, once it enters the body - due to absorption of water by the particles.

During their investigations, the research team injected the material into a damaged bovine intervertebral disc and increased the pH to biological levels by injecting an alkaline solution.

Professor Freemont, who works in the Division of Regenerative Medicine in the School of Medicine, said: "This research was motivated by the urgent need for a non-surgical method for repairing intervertebral discs.

"Our approach has the advantage of restoring spinal mobility whereas spinal fusion surgery results in a signific ant loss of mobility at the fused and adjacent discs."

Dr Saunders said: "Although we are encouraged by our findings, much work lies ahead to develop a viable non-surgical repair technology to replace spinal fusion as the standard surgical treatment for chronic lower back pain."

He added that future work will investigate biodegradable microgels that release additives to stimulate regeneration of intervertebral disc tissue.


'"/>

Source:University of Manchester


Related biology news :

1. Protein discovery could unlock the secret to better TB treatment
2. Tiny particles could solve billion-dollar problem
3. First atlas of key brain genes could speed research on cancer, neurological diseases
4. Discovery of key proteins shape could lead to improved bacterial pneumonia vaccine
5. A comprehensive response to HIV could prevent 10 million AIDS deaths in Africa by 2020
6. How the environment could be damaging mens reproductive health
7. Dead zone area in Gulf could be increasing, researchers say
8. Growth in biomass could put US on road to energy independence
9. Nano-bumps could help repair clogged blood vessels
10. Researchers develop assay that could be applied to drug screening
11. Currents could disrupt ocean food chain
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:11/22/2016)... 22, 2016   MedNet Solutions , an innovative ... of clinical research, is pleased to announce that the ... and Life Sciences Awards as "Most Outstanding in ... unprecedented year of recognition and growth for MedNet, which ... years. iMedNet ™ , MedNet,s ...
(Date:11/16/2016)... Nov. 16, 2016 Sensory Inc ., ... security for consumer electronics, and VeriTran , ... retail industry, today announced a global partnership that ... to authenticate users of mobile banking and mobile ... software which requires no specialized biometric scanners, ...
(Date:6/27/2016)... , June 27, 2016 Research and ... North America 2016-2020" report to their offering. ... North America to grow at a CAGR of ... been prepared based on an in-depth market analysis with inputs from ... prospects over the coming years. The report also includes a discussion ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:12/4/2016)... SAN DIEGO , Dec. 3, 2016  In ... Society of Hematology (ASH) Annual Meeting and Exposition in ... advanced biomedical engineering methods to improve the delivery of ... conditions. These new methods are designed to carry therapies ... are needed most, which could provide a substantial advantage ...
(Date:12/2/2016)... , Dec. 2, 2016  The Multiple Myeloma ... from the MMRF CoMMpass Study SM —the largest and ... precision medicine in multiple myeloma—will be presented at the ... Meeting & Exposition in San Diego ... to optimize treatment strategies, as well as identify pathways ...
(Date:12/2/2016)... ... December 01, 2016 , ... ACEA Biosciences, Inc. announced today that it will ... AC0010 at the World Conference on Lung Cancer 2016, taking place in Vienna, Austria ... I/II clinical trials for AC0010 in patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer harboring ...
(Date:12/2/2016)... ... ... The Conference Forum has announced that the 3rd annual Immuno-Oncology 360° ... 1-3, 2017 at the Roosevelt Hotel in New York City. Led by advisors Dr ... approach, which addresses the most up-to-date information regarding business aspects, clinical advancements and scientific ...
Breaking Biology Technology: