Plasma medicine research at UniSA
The direct application of ionized gas (plasma) to living tissue has been investigated in the treatment of chronic wounds, bacterial infections, dental hygiene and decay and cancer. Encouraging results in the last decade, that include randomised clinical trials, provide the basis for claims of a new medical technology termed “plasma medicine”.
At UniSA we have been focusing on the fundamentals of how non-thermal atmospheric-pressure plasma jet (APPJ) interacts with tissue. We have shown that APPJ can be used to deliver and / or generate reactive oxygen and nitrogen species (RONS) deep within tissue (>> 1 mm). We have (also) shown that APPJ generated RONS can be transported directly across cellular-like membranes, without the disruption of these membranes. Our approach involves the use of synthetic tissue models (gelatin and agarose targets) and synthetic cell models (phospholipid membrane vesicles with diameters of 100 nm to 2 micrometres) with embedded or encapsulated chemical and biological RONS reporters. Our results are important in wound therapy, cancer therapy, biotechnology, medicine, tissue regeneration, decontamination and sterilisation: plasma may be used in the future to directly intervene in cell signalling processes deep within affected tissue to combat disease and regenerate tissue.
Our key findings are described in our publications below.
Studying the cytolytic activity of gas plasma with self-signalling phospholipid vesicles dispersed within a gelatin matrix.
Left: Experiment - Plasma treatment of synthetic cells embedded with a gelatin matrix
Left: RONS interaction with vesicles embedded within gelatin
Plasma jet delivers reactive species deep into tissue with potential to destroy tumours and biofilms.
Follow this link to access our paper on this topic: http://iopscience.iop.org/0022-3727/46/18/185401
(> 250 downloads, March 2015)
A ‘tissue model’ to study the plasma delivery of reactive oxygen species
A demonstration of plasma delivering specific RONS deep within tissue (up to 1.5 mm in thickness).
Follow this link to access our paper on this topic: http://iopscience.iop.org/0022-3727/47/15/152002
(550 Downloads, March 2015)
Ionized gas (plasma) delivery of reactive oxygen species (ROS) into artificial cells
Synthetic cells (vesicles) encapsulating a ROS reporter are used to detect the plasma transport of ROS across phospholipid membranes.
Follow this link to access our paper on this topic: http://iopscience.iop.org/0022-3727/47/36/362001?rel=sem&relno=1 (>300 Downloads, March 2015)
On the effects of atmospheric-pressure microplasma array treatment on polymer and biological materials
Helium microplasma array treatment induces oxidation and cross-linking of protein, which may be linked to accelerated wound healing.
Follow this link to access our paper on this topic
Plasma screen for improved plasma healthcare
Plasma treatment of living human skin through a plasma screen
PCT filed 18 Feb 2015: Plasma hydrogel therapy
Plasma activated bandage
Set-up used for the plasma activation of hydrogel dressings
Plasma activated dressing releases RONS into solution for therapy. PCT filed 18 Feb 2015: Plasma hydrogel therapy
Find out more
Find out more about plasma medicine research: Professor David Graves http://www.graveslab.org/