Following her performance made for terrorist attack victims in Bali, Dr Fiona Wood’s genuine solution for burns victims has drawn international cheers. Currently West Australian Burns Service Director and Clinical Cell Culture Ltd co-founder/Director, this leading doctor’s technology called as ‘spray-on skin,’ assisted to substantially decrease Bali bombings death toll. Wood’s method let’s be applied for the rapid administration of skin cells, accelerating healing procedure and significantly decreasing scarring. Where prior skin culturing technologies demanded 21 days to manufacture enough cells to cover major burns, Wood’s breakthrough technology has decreased this time to almost 5 days.
Investigation has exhibited that scar formation is significantly decreased if the wound treats fast. A burn wound that demands 21 days or more to be treated has a larger than 70% risk of significant scar developing, in comparison with burn wound that treated in less than 10 days, which has only a 4% risk of hypertrophic scar development. Hence it is necessary to heal burns as soon as possible to reduce scarring and enhance the patient’s capability to move and perform functions in society.
The skin cell transplant technology development started in 1990, when Dr Wood was healing patients with severe burn damages. Healing great burn damages usually includes application of cultured skin in sheets form to wound. The skin sheets are grown from skin cells got from the patient but ordinary take 14-21 days to manufacture. Dr Wood investigated that scarring could reduce if the wound could be healed within 10 days. She discovered that although skin sheets manufactured in 10 days often had holes in them, these regions healed quicker than those cured with confluent sheets, and with less obvious scarring, because the cells had not reached overall confluence. And thus, a new technology was created.
The next step was to use pre-confluent cells in a suspension even as early as five days before they built a sheet, with the ‘spray on’ technology optimal. In this technique cells are harvested from the patient’s epidermis, and expanded in culture. They can be grown into a concentrated single cell suspension or a confluent cell sheet for patient’s wound application. The healthy, living cells are incubateв in a highly equipped laboratory by essential division procedures, and then transplanted into the patient. As the original cells are obtained from the actual patient instead of a donor (autologous cell culture), the body lives up with these cells as its own, the tissue continues growing, and the treatment procedure becomes optimised. The burn performs as an ideal culture medium, and sprayed on pre-confluent cells grow faster on the patient than in the laboratory. The benefit is that wounds or burns are treated rapidly and leave less scarring if a skin graft is utilized soon after an injury.
The CellSpray is another innovation that improves treatment for larger wounds. Also known as ‘Spray on Skin,’ the process involves using an aerosol delivery system to apply cultured skin cell suspensions evenly to larger and more massive wounds or burns.
These techniques and technology commercialisation is carried out by the Australian commercial biotechnology company, Clinical Cell Culture or ‘C3.’ The C3 laboratory now incubates small biopsies into bigger skin cell volumes suspensions in as few as five days, and this service is applied by surgeons in Sydney, Auckland and Birmingham, UK. Cells can be brought by means of aircraft and ready for application the next day in the majority of cases. Royalties from licensing will be ploughed back into a research means, known as McComb Foundation.
The intellectual ownership is ensured by a trade secrets and trademark procedures combination, where employee confidentiality is supreme, and knowledge about C3’s encubating procedures is constricted. The company has now achieved a wonderful phase with new products being rolled out and training of medical staff in other hospitals being undertaken. Recently, practicing has been finished for the Royal Hobart and Royal Brisbane Hospitals. ReCell is the latest breakthrough created by C3, and having got WA Government funding maintenance, will hopefully be present on the market till the next year end. It will be included in a first aid kit that will enable surgeons to harvest skin cells in operating to let them treat small wounds in one operation. Cells are harvested from a small biopsy on a petri dish within 30 minutes. ReCell also let pigment cells be harvested, so it can be applied in pigment loss treatment, like the size of two hands or a face.