A MAGNETIC MACHINE PLUCKS PATHOGENS FROM BLOOD

Written by Science Knowledge on 8:27 AM

DR. MAGNETO A

MAGNETIC MACHINE PLUCKS PATHOGENS FROM BLOOD



If your uncle says he is getting magnetic therapy, you might feel the urge to tell him to save his money instead for that tinfoil hat to keep the CIA from reading his mind. But if he is being hooked up to Don Ingber’s magnet machine, it just might save his life. Ingber’s device magnetizes microbes and draws them out of the blood. It could save some of the 210,000 Americans— mostly newborns and the elderly—who die sepsis-related deaths every year. Sepsis sets in when bacteria or fungi invade the blood, which can cause organ failure before drugs have time to take effect. “Traditionally, you prescribe antibiotics and pray,” says Ingber, a vascular biologist at Harvard Medical School and Children’s Hospital. His machine operates more quickly.

In lab tests, Ingber’s team mixed donor blood with the fungus Candida albicans, a common cause of sepsis, and added plastic-coated iron-oxide beads, each a hundredth of a hair-width in diameter and covered with antibodies that seek out and attach to the fungus. Next they ran the mixture through the dialysis-like machine, which uses an electromagnet to pull the beads, and any pathogens stuck to them, from blood into a saline solution. The device removes 80 percent of the invaders—enough so that drugs could knock out the rest—in a couple of hours. Ingber will begin animal testing this fall to ensure that the method works in living subjects and doesn’t hurt healthy cells. He might later modify the technique to pull cancer cells from blood or harvest stem cells. “This can sift through a patient’s entire blood volume and pull out the needle in a haystack,” he says. —ALLISON BOND

Source of Information : Popular Science July 2009

Related Posts by Categories



  1. 0 comments: Responses to “ A MAGNETIC MACHINE PLUCKS PATHOGENS FROM BLOOD ”


About Me

In its broadest sense, science (from the Latin scientia, meaning "knowledge") refers to any systematic knowledge or practice. In its more usual restricted sense, science refers to a system of acquiring knowledge based on scientific method, as well as to the organized body of knowledge gained through such research.

Fields of science are commonly classified along two major lines: natural sciences, which study natural phenomena (including biological life), and social sciences, which study human behavior and societies. These groupings are empirical sciences, which means the knowledge must be based on observable phenomena and capable of being experimented for its validity by other researchers working under the same conditions.


You are welcome to contact me and leave your comments in my Blog.

Science Knowledge

Want to subscribe?

Science Knowledge

Grab this Headline Animator

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner