Doctors using nanochips to repair wounds by changing cells

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Doctors using nanochips to repair wounds by changing cells: Sharrie Williams reports during Action News at 5 p.m. on August 7, 2017. (WPVI)

Scientists at Ohio State University have created a dramatic new way to heal the body.

The small device turns skin cells into nearly any type of cell doctors need.

Using a tiny electrical current, the nanochip reprograms the cells.

In studies with lab mice, skin cells were reprogrammed to become blood vessels to restore blood flow to badly injured legs.

"And it will quickly shoot the DNA right into the cells," said James Lee, PH.D.

"In many cases, in 7 days, you start seeing changes and these changes, to our pleasant surprise, persists," said Chandan Sen, Ph.D.

Doctors have also been able to convert skin cells to brain cells in mice, to heal stroke damage.

There's no immune system rejection, since the cells are grown in the recipient's own body.

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