Thursday, January 07, 2010

Nanotech used to create pulsing artificial arteries


A team of British researchers are set to begin a trial program by planting nanotechnology-based artificial arteries into humans.

Scientists at London's Royal Free Hospital received a grant of more than $800,000 to move the artificial artery project from the laboratory to human trials within the next year, according to the hospital. The artificial arteries are made of a polymer material that's combined with nanomaterials. The hospital said the materials can closely mimic natural vessels by pulsing along with the beating of the patient's heart.

The grant was issued by the Wellcome Trust, which is the largest charity in the U.K.

"The new micro-graft pulses rhythmically to match the beat of the heart," said George Hamilton, a team leader and professor of vascular surgery at the Royal Free Hospital. "As well as this, the new graft material is strong, flexible, resistant to blood clotting and doesn't break down, which is a major breakthrough."

The arteries are designed to replace ruptured or diseased vessals in human hearts and legs.

Nanotechnology has been a major part of medical research in recent years.

Source

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