The Lactose Intolerance Clearinghouse Has Moved.

My old website can be found at www.stevecarper.com/li I am no longer updating the site, so there will be dead links. The static information provided by me is still sound.

For quick offline reference, you can purchase Planet Lactose: The Best of the Blog as an ebook on Smashwords.com or Amazon.com or BarnesandNoble.com or a whole lot of other places that Smashwords is suppose to distribute the book to. Almost 100,000 words on LI, allergies, milk products, milk-free products, and the genetics of intolerance, along with large helpings of the weirdness that is the Net.

I suffer the universal malady of spam and adbots, so I moderate comments here. That may mean you'll see a long lag before I remember to check the site and approve them. Despite the gap, you'll always get your say. I read every single one, and every legitimate one gets posted.


Saturday, January 13, 2007

Nanotech Bandaids

I'm an sf writer, so it's rare that in the real world I run across something that sounds as if it came directly from the pages of a story, but this bit of nanotechnology - discovered by accident - is so nifty in its simplicity and usefulness that it just stunned me.

From MIT's Technology Review magazine:

In 2001, Rutledge Ellis-Behnke, PhD '03, a research scientist in the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences, was doing surgical research on hamster brains. He and his colleagues were using a liquid made of protein fragments known as peptides to encourage the regeneration of neural tissue, a prospective treatment for stroke.

...

Through a string of experiments at the University of Hong Kong, he discovered that when the liquid is applied to a surgical wound in a mouse or hamster, the peptides self-assemble into a nanoscale barrier that seals the wound. Once the wound heals, the nontoxic gel is broken down into molecules that cells use for tissue repair, Ellis-Behnke explains.

The researchers (including Kwok-Fai So, PhD '77, head of the Department of Anatomy at the University of Hong Kong) published the results in October 2006 in the journal Nanomedicine, noting that this was the first time nanotechnology had been used to halt bleeding in damaged blood vessels without clotting. "We have found a way to stop bleeding in less than 15 seconds that could revolutionize bleeding control," Ellis-Behnke says.

A zingier article is up at the Discover magazine website:
Researchers have stumbled upon a clear liquid that, in tests conducted so far, stops bleeding in about 15 seconds, faster and with fewer complications than other methods available today.

The researchers, from Massachusetts Institute of Technology and University of Hong Kong, have found a liquid that, according to one of the researchers, MIT's Rutledge Ellis-Behnke, can be applied "wherever there's an injury or a cut, and it ... stops bleeding right away without clotting."

Another member of the research team, Gerald Schneider, also of MIT, says its easy to administer and that, "You could put it in a tube and squeeze it out like toothpaste."

Ellis-Behnke adds when you wipe away the liquid, bleeding resumes, but if you reapply the liquid it stops.

The gel uses amino acids, the body's building blocks, to create nano-scale fibers that Ellis-Behnke says, "May be self assembling into a nano-patch." He describes the effect as similar to hair clogging a drain.


Very, very cool.

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