Home / Knowledge / News / Textiles / Silk optics find multiple uses in human body
Silk optics find multiple uses in human body
05
Dec '12
Tufts University School of Engineering researchers have demonstrated silk-based implantable optics that  offer significant improvement in tissue imaging while simultaneously enabling photo thermal therapy, administering drugs and  monitoring drug delivery. The devices also lend themselves to a variety of other biomedical functions.

Biodegradable and biocompatible, these tiny mirror-like devices dissolve harmlessly at predetermined rates and require no surgery to remove them.

The technology is the brainchild of a research team led by Fiorenzo Omenetto, Frank C. Doble Professor of Engineering at Tufts. For several years, Omenetto; David L. Kaplan, Stern Family Professor of Biomedical Engineering and Biomedical Engineering chair, and their colleagues have been exploring ways to leverage silk's optical capabilities with its capacity as a resilient, biofriendly material that can stabilize materials while maintaining their biochemical functionality.

The technology is described in the paper "Implantable Multifunctional Bioresorbable Optics," published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences online Early Edition the week of November 12, 2012.

"This work showcases the potential of silk to bring together form and function.  In this case an implantable optical form -- the mirror -- can go beyond imaging to serve multiple biomedical functions," Omenetto says.

Turning Silk into Mirrors

Microscopic image of a silk optical implant embedded with gold nano particles. When implanted in tissue and illuminated with green laser light, the particles converted light to heat, turning the reflector into a thermal therapy to control bacterial infection or kill malignant cells.

When implanted in tissue and illuminated with green laser light, the particles converted light to heat, turning the reflector into a thermal therapy to control bacterial infection or kill malignant cells. To create the optical devices, the Tufts bioengineers poured a purified silk protein solution into molds of multiple micro-sized prism reflectors, or microprism arrays (MPAs).

They pre-determined the rates at which the devices would dissolve in the body by regulating the water content of the solution during processing. The cast solution was then air dried to form solid silk films in the form of the mold. The resulting silk sheets were much like the reflective tape found on safety garments or on traffic signs.

When implanted, these MPAs reflected back photons that are ordinarily lost with reflection-based imaging technologies, thereby enhancing imaging, even in deep tissue.

The researchers tested the devices using solid and liquid "phantoms" (materials that mimic the scattering that occurs when light passes through human tissue). The tiny mirror-like devices reflected substantially stronger optical signals than implanted silk films that had not been formed as MPAs. 

Must ReadView All

Apparel/Garments | On 28th May 2017

Over 45% US retailers to use AI in next 3 years: Report

Over 45 per cent retailers in the US plan to utilise artificial...

Neelesh Hundekari speaking at the event. Courtesy: Subir Ghosh

Textiles | On 27th May 2017

Fabric of Change initiative announces €250000 scaling fund

The Fabric of Change initiative of Ashoka and the C&A Foundation is...

Apparel/Garments | On 28th May 2017

Naked Brand, Bendon sign agreement to reorganise

Naked Brand Group, a fashion and lifestyle brand, and Bendon Limited, ...

Interviews View All

Akash Khetan
Narayan Tex Fab

I find it hard to find professionals in Surat

Janak Dhamanwala & Sunil Dhamanwala
Jansun

Moving towards sustainability is also a social change

Amit Jain
Shingora Textiles Ltd

‘In terms of fabric, the fastest growing category for us is a blend of...

Mark Paterson
Technical Absorbents Ltd

Mark Paterson, R&D manager of Technical Absorbents Ltd talks about Super...

Mohammad Hassan
Biax Fiberfilm

About one in every 20 patients picks up an infection while hospitalised....

Lynda Kelly
Suominen Corporation

Suominen Corporation is a manufacturer of nonwovens as roll goods for...

Igor Chapurin
Chapurin

"Now we can see the Russian trend in international fashion. And Russian...

Robert Brunner
Devereux

Golfwear and menswear brand Devereux is set for greener pastures. Robert...

Judy Frater
Somaiya Kala Vidya

Among the many honours showered on Frater, including Fulbright and Ford...

Press Release

Press Release

Letter to Editor

Letter to Editor

RSS Feed

RSS Feed

Submit your press release on


editorial@fibre2fashion.com

Letter To Editor






(Max. 8000 char.)

Search Companies





SEARCH

news category


Related Categories:
May 2017

May 2017

Subscribe today and get the latest update on Textiles, Fashion, Apparel and so on.

SUBSCRIBE


Browse Our Archives

GO


E-News Insight
Subscribe Today and Get the
Latest News Update in Your Mail Box.
Advanced Search