UConn biomedical engineers are touting a wirelessly controlled “smart” bandage and corresponding platform for delivering medications to chronic, non-healing wounds.
UConn’s School of Dental Medicine, School of Medicine and School of Engineering comprise the biomedical engineering department, which contributed to developing the smart bandage. Ali Tamayol, an associate professor at UConn, led the development of the bandage alongside researchers from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and Harvard Medical School.
The wearable bandage is constructed with miniature needles that can be controlled wirelessly, which is designed to allow care providers to program the drug delivery without even visiting the patient, according to a report in UConn Today.
A provider is supposed to be able to wirelessly control the release of multiple drugs through the needles, which are designed to penetrate into deeper layers of the wound bed with minimal pain and inflammation.
A recently published article in the Advanced Functional Materials journal revealed that a study of the bandage was first conducted on cells and later on diabetic mice with full-thickness skin injury. In the study, the mice showed signs of complete healing and lack of scar formation, showing the product’s capability to improve wound healing in diabetic animals.
“This is an important step in engineering advanced bandages that can facilitate the healing of hard to treat wounds,” Tamayol told UConn Today. “The bandage does not need to be changed continuously.”
The researchers believe that the new technology could replace existing wound care systems and reduce the morbidity of chronic wounds, changing the standard treatment of diabetic wounds. According to UConn Today, Tamayol recently applied for a patent for the bandage’s technology.