Researchers at the Terasaki Institute for Biomedical Innovation have developed a flexible, conductive patch called ePatch that can speed up wound healing. The novelty is designed to replace the bulky and inflexible electrodes used so far in electric field therapy.
The smart patch contains silver nanowires as electrodes embedded in alginate, an absorbent substance to control moisture. By chemically modifying alginate and adding calcium, which in the mixture induces cell proliferation and their migration to the wound site, the scientists obtained a material that increased the stability and functionality of the electrode.
By itself, electric field stimulation is considered an effective method of wound healing. The current activates the migration of skin cells and other granulation elements, promoting the formation of new capillaries and preventing excessive inflammation. The creators of ePatch are confident that their development will make electric therapy more accessible, and therefore more popular.