New implant design prevents scar tissue without drugs, MIT says

Ellen Roche, MIT School of Engineering associate professor, and a team of researchers developed a new implant design for delaying scar tissue formation. [Photo courtesy of MIT]

Mechanically inflating and deflating an implantable device for 10 minutes a day prevents immune cells from building the scar tissue that has been a major obstacle for artificial pancreas researchers.

That’s according to new findings from a team of MIT engineers who built mechanical deflection into a two-chambered, soft polyurethane device tested on mice. By pumping up and down for five minutes every 12 hours, the device prevented immune cells from accumulating and building scar tissue without immunosuppressants.

The researchers reported fewer neutrophils surrounding the device in the short term. And when scar tissue did eventually form, the researchers described an unusual structure of highly aligned collagen fibers instead …

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