Healing bandages

Materials World magazine
15 Jun 2020

Alternative cotton dressings for diabetic wounds and burn injuries could aid the healing process by releasing an agent to promote new blood vessel formation.

Collaborating with scientists from Pakistan, researchers from the University of Sheffield, UK, claim the bandages containing pro-angiogenic agent 2-deoxy-D-ribose (2dDR) could be more affordable and accessible for patients in developing countries with an urgent need for dressing chronic wounds.

‘The new dressings we are developing are demonstrating the potential to treat these wounds more effectively than the current treatment methods,’ says Sheila MacNeil, Emeritus Professor of Tissue Engineering at the University.

They have discovered that two types of dressings – a non-woven cotton dressing and a cotton wax dressing – filled with the agent stimulates blood vessel formation in a fertilised chick egg model. 

‘The non-woven cotton fibres would be ideal for treating chronic wounds and ulcer wounds because of their good absorption capacity, while the 2dDR-containing cotton wax dressing would be more appropriate for treating burn wounds because of its non-adhesive properties,’ MacNeil explains.  

‘We’re now hoping to continue our research in Pakistan and run first in man safety studies, before clinical trials to bring the dressings a step closer to being available for patients and healthcare systems.’