An external device that mimics the structure of a spleen can cleanse the blood of rats with acute sepsis, ridding the fluid of pathogens and toxins.
A microfluidic device filled with magnetic
nanometer-sized beads that bind a plethora of pathogens and toxins was
able to clear these invaders from the blood of rats with sepsis,
improving their outcomes, according to a paper published today
(September 14) in Nature Medicine. The design of the extracorporeal
device was inspired by the small vessels and sinusoids within the
spleen, through which blood “trickles slowly, almost like in a wetlands,
efficiently capturing pathogens” said lead study author Donald Ingber, a
professor at Harvard Medical School and founding director of the Wyss
Institute in Boston.
Next Generation: Blood-Cleansing Device