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:12/5/2018)... ... December 04, 2018 , ... Biolytic Lab ... Dr. Oligo 192c, built on Biolytic’s Molecule Synthesis Platform. , Now restructured ... to become the world’s fastest in oligonucleotide synthesis, the 192c incorporates a multitude ...
(Date:11/27/2018)... FRANCISCO (PRWEB) , ... November 26, 2018 , ... ... of Dr. Brandon Wuerth, MD, Founder of the website IBDwatch and Gastroenterology Fellow ... of leading scientists and doctors from around the world, Dr. Wuerth will bring ...
(Date:11/23/2018)... , ... November 23, 2018 , ... ... Emeran Mayer, MD, Executive Director of the G. Oppenheimer Center for Neurobiology of ... scientists and doctors from around the world, Dr. Mayer will bring to uBiome ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:12/5/2018)... ... December 05, 2018 , ... STRmix™ – sophisticated forensic ... interpret – has been used to convict a Wyoming man of third-degree sexual assault, ... Laboratory used STRmix™ to test for DNA on the couch cushions on which the ...
(Date:11/27/2018)... ... , ... New patients in need of a dental crown in ... without a referral. Dr. Myers has many years of experience improving patient smiles with ... custom crowns. , As a dedicated cosmetic dentist , Dr. Myers has ...
(Date:11/20/2018)... ... November 20, 2018 , ... Each year Forbes receives thousands of nominations ... highlights outstanding performance by individuals under 30 years of age. The Forbes 30 Under ... Sports and Entertainment to Venture Capital and Science. , In 2017, Visikol CEO ...
(Date:11/13/2018)... ... November 12, 2018 , ... ... stethoscope contamination that two large U.S. studies, published last week, confirm pose a ... Journal of Infection Control (AJIC) conclude that stethoscopes are often improperly or rarely ...
Breaking Biology Technology: