The molybdenum electrodes transmit real-time data to the bandage’s coil at the opposite end
Scientists at Northwestern University have developed a bioresorbable electronic bandage that delivers electrotherapy to wounds, speeds up the healing process and can wirelessly monitor injured sites. The flexible and affordable bandage, which can be wrapped around a wound, has a flower-shaped electrode that sits on top of the injury and a ring-shaped electrode surrounding it on healthy tissue. It also has an energy-harvesting coil to power the electrodes and a near-field communication system that wirelessly transmits data from the device in real time. In a study on mice, wounds closed up to 30% faster when the bandage was applied for 30 minutes a day. When the wound has healed sufficiently, the flower-shaped electrode dissolves and is absorbed, avoiding any damage to the tissue that could be caused by physical extraction. The bandage is expected to be particularly useful for people with diabetes, who face serious complications from frequent and slow-healing sores. Researchers now plan to test the bandage on diabetic ulcers in larger animals before moving on to a human study.