The use of inexpensive, easy-to-use magnets to isolate T-cells after they are incubated provides efficiency. Together with the widespread availability of carbon nanotubes and biodegradable polymers, the Yale researchers are optimistic that the new CNT immunotherapy could be the economical “off-the-shelf” therapy for chronic infections and cancers that many have long been waiting for.

Composite Trauma Plates

For decades, bone fracture surgery has relied on metal screws, pins, rods and plates to repair compound fractures or other severe breaks. In March, Invibio Biomaterial Solutions of Lancashire, U.K., introduced an alternative – trauma plates made from PEEK-OPTIMA® Ultra-Reinforced high-performance composite materials.

Invibio says that the plates, which feature a polyetheretherketone (PEEK) polymer reinforced with continuous carbon fiber, have mechanical strength that is similar to metals, but with a reduced stiffness like that of cortical bone. Metal, which is much stiffer than bone, can cause stress shielding and delayed healing, according to the company. PEEK-OPTIMA Ultra-Reinforced plates also have shown 50 times greater resistance to fatigue, making them more durable over time.

Another benefit of composite trauma plates is their radiolucency, which means they appear nearly transparent on X-rays. This allows for a clear view of the fracture site to assess healing and identify infection. In addition, the plates are biologically inert and have low tissue adhesion. This, combined with the lack of cold welding, may make removal of the device in follow-up surgeries less complicated and help preserve the surrounding bone.

Invibio has received endorsements from orthopaedic surgeons, including Dr. David J. Hak from Denver Health, University of Colorado. “Patients who are at risk for slow or delayed healing can benefit from implants composed of PEEK-OPTIMA ® Ultra-Reinforced because the fatigue life is so much greater than metal. They’re more likely to be able to heal their fracture before the implant fails due to fatigue,” he says in an Invibio press release. “I’ve been using the material for about two years in the proximal humerus, and I’ve been very pleased with the outcome of those patients.”