Artificial Skin Helps with Rare Blister Disease

WASHINGTON, DC-Children afflicted with a rare genetic disease may be helped with a new artificial skin.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently approved the skin. Children who have epidermolysis bullosa have severe blisters that can scar and leave the fingers melded together like a mitten. Their fingers must be separated surgically, wrapped in non-sticky bandages and healed with skin grafts. The healing process takes extensive amounts of time, leaving the door open for infection.

New York-based Ortec International Inc., wants to change this process with a composite cultured skin made from living skin cells and the foreskins from circumcised newborn baby boys. The new artificial skin is aimed at those who are severely affected by the disease. There are 4,000 people diagnosed per year with EB.

Australian surgeons using the new skin found it helped speed up the healing process, therefore, preventing infection.

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