A small ion pump in organic electronics is giving new hope to people suffering from severe nerve pain. Researchers at Linköping University (LiU) and Karolinska Institutet (KI) are the first in the world with technology that can stop pain impulses in living, freely moving rats using the body’s own pain relief signals.
The results of ten years of research are now being published in Science Advances.
The implantable “ion pump” that delivers the body’s own pain alleviators with exact dosage precisely to the location where the pain signals reach the spinal cord for further transmission to the brain, could be in clinical use in five to ten years. Firstly, the device gives hope to the seven percent of the world’s population suffering from nerve pain for whom no other cure has been found – until now. But the pump could also be used to supply therapeutic substances to the brain and other parts of the body in addition to the spinal cord.
“The ion pump can be likened to a pacemaker, except for alleviating pain,” says Professor Magnus Berggren, head of the research conducted by Assistant Professor Daniel Simon and PhD student Amanda Jonsson at the Laboratory of Organic Electronics at Linköping University’s Campus Norrköping, in collaboration with Dr. Zhiyang Song of the Department of Clinical Neuroscience at Karolinska Institutet, where Professor Bengt Linderoth leads the preclinical side of the project.
While a pacemaker sends electrical impulses to the heart, the ion pump sends out the body’s own pain alleviator – charged molecules of what are known as neurotransmitters – to the exact place where the damaged nerves come into contact with the spinal cord. This means that the pain impulses never reach the brain. In this case, the device delivered the neurotransmitter ?-aminobutyric acid (GABA), whose natural task is to inhibit stimuli in our central nervous system.
The technological breakthrough described in the Science Advances article is that the researchers constructed the therapeutic implant using organic electronics – a class of materials capable of easy translation between electronic and biochemical signals –and that it has been used to block pain impulses in awake, freely-moving rats. With the help of the ion pump, positively-charged ions can be administered in four different locations, adapted according to the exact points where the nerve endings meet the spinal cord. An electric current through the ion pump is all that is needed for the GABA neurotransmitter to be spread as a thin cloud at these exact locations on the spinal cord. So far, the pain alleviation has had no negative side effects.
“What’s unique is that we’re using organic electronics to send the body’s own chemical signals. The organic materials are easily accepted by the body, and they communicate just as in biology – with charged ions,” says Assistant Professor Simon, who was also the one who presented the initial results in which an ion pump based on plastic electronics could regulate cell functions in living animals, published in Nature Materials in 2009.
The Latest on: Pain alleviation
via Google News
The Latest on: Pain alleviation
- Muscle pain relief: Eight fixes that really work to ease muscle aches and painson May 7, 2021 at 9:30 pm
The best muscle pain relief solutions around. Whether you're facing DOMS, chronic muscle pain or something else, try these fixes ...
- This Pain-Relieving Mat Is Backed by Experts—and 20,000 Shopperson May 7, 2021 at 11:57 am
It's an acupressure mat that's made with hundreds of tiny cotton and foam needles that help stimulate your body's blood flow to provide muscle relief. The practice of acupressure originated in China ...
- If You Have Endometriosis, Consider These 3 Types of Birth Control to Help Alleviate Painon May 7, 2021 at 9:00 am
An estimated 200 million people worldwide have endometriosis, and it's considered "a major cause of pain and infertility," said Jessica Shepherd, MD, an ob-gyn and chief medical officer of Verywell ...
- These 9 Mattresses For Back Pain Provide Some Serious Reliefon May 7, 2021 at 6:01 am
But if you’re sleeping on the wrong mattress, you might end up with pain in your back—and that’s not how anyone wants to start their day. If this sounds familiar, it might be time to invest in one of ...
- LI man rents oxygen chamber seeking COVID pain reliefon May 6, 2021 at 3:38 pm
A Long Island man desperate to find relief from post-COVID headaches and neck pain rented a hyperbaric chamber for his living room, so he can climb inside and breathe 92% ...
- The 10 Best Mattress Toppers for Back Pain — Shop Nowon May 6, 2021 at 9:07 am
If you deal with any type of back pain, these mattress toppers could completely transform the way you sleep — find out more and shop here ...
- A new form of CBD may offer more potent pain relief and ease opioid cravingson May 5, 2021 at 12:42 pm
New research out of Temple University may now be unlocking the potential of a new CBD derivative that shows signs of halting pain effects in mice. And the same drug also could be effective at ...
- Topical Pain Relief Market in U.S. Growing At A CAGR Of 3.7% And To Target $3.27 Billion By 2027on May 4, 2021 at 5:36 am
The U.S. topical pain relief market was valued at $2,612 million in 2019, and is projected to reach $3,272 million by 2027 at a CAGR of 3.7% from 2020 to 2027. Download Free Report Sample @ The ...
- Global Pain Relief Patches Market Segmentation, Growth, Assessing Major Growth Opportunities by 2025on May 3, 2021 at 11:31 am
The global Pain Relief Patches market size is expected to gain market growth in the forecast period of 2020 to 2025, with a CAGR of 7.5% in the forecast period of 2020 to 2025 and will expected to ...
- 7 Natural Pain Relief Options To Consider Before Prescription Drugson April 28, 2021 at 11:59 am
If you are currently looking for the best manner in which to get a handle on your own chronic pain, here are a number of natural pain relief methods that you can consider.
via Bing News