Cold Plasma for Tumor Eradication
The FDA has greenlighted a phase 1 clinical trial for cold atmospheric plasma technology that kills remaining microscopic tumors following tumor resection.
Researchers at Purdue University and other institutions developed an electrosurgical scalpel to spray cold plasma on lingering cancerous cells or tissue. The two- to seven-minute process targets tumors exclusively, sparing surrounding healthy tissue, according to findings of in vitro and in vivo tests as well as use of cold plasma in compassionate-use cases.
That contrasts with lasers that could also kill cancerous tissue but would permanently harm nearby healthy tissue.
Highlighting the technology’s potential uses, Purdue points to the 20%–40% of women in the U.S. who currently must undergo additional surgery following partial mastectomy because of marginal tumors missed during the initial procedure.
Wearable Sensors to Analyze Sweat
Scientists at the University of California, Berkeley, and VTT-Technical Research Centre of Finland have developed sweat-analyzing, wearable skin sensors.
The goal is to provide real-time information about conditions such as dehydration and to make blood draws or other invasive procedures less necessary.
The team of researchers tested the skin-adhering sensors on volunteers during exercise and on another group of participants in whom perspiration was chemically induced. According to findings published in Science Advances, the sensors monitor concentrations of metabolites, such as glucose, and electrolytes, such as sodium, as well as the rate of perspiration.
“Traditionally what people have done is ... collect sweat from the body for a certain amount of time and then analyze it,” Hnin Yin Yin Nyein, a lead author of the paper, says in a news release. “So you couldn’t really see the dynamic changes very well with good resolution. Using these wearable devices, we can now continuously collect data from different parts of the body to understand how the local sweat loss can estimate whole-body fluid loss.”
Intact-Ring Removal for Swollen Fingers
“On the other hand, there’s a golden band,” a country tune reminds us.
The dilemma is, clinicians often have to remove rings before certain procedures — such as cautery, during which rings can cause sparks and burns — but patients with swollen fingers are loath to see their wedding bands or other rings snipped off.
FDA-cleared RingRescue, designed by Canadian scientists, seeks to resolve that issue.
RingRescue incorporates a tube that fits over the swollen finger and creates air pressure to reduce swelling and permit removal of the ring without damaging it, according to the manufacturer of the device.
Potential applications include use on patients whose fingers have swollen because of anything from pregnancy to bee stings to sports injuries.