Technique to bypass damaged lungs and inject oxygen directly into blood found
Patients unable to breathe because of acute lung failure or an obstructed airway need another way to get oxygen to their blood -- and fast -- to avoid cardiac arrest and brain injury. A team led by researchers at Boston Children's Hospital has designed tiny, gas-filled microparticles that can be injected directly into the bloodstream to quickly oxygenate the blood.
The microparticles consist of a single layer of lipids (fatty molecules) that surround a tiny pocket of oxygen gas, and are delivered in a liquid solution. In a cover article in the June 27 issue of Science Translational Medicine, John Kheir, MD, of the Department of Cardiology at Boston Children's Hospital, and colleagues report that an infusion of these microparticles into animals with low blood oxygen levels restored blood oxygen saturation to near-normal levels, within seconds.
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