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Biotech Medicine Science

Fracture Putty Can Heal a Broken Bone In Days 236

Posted by Soulskill
from the silly-putty-not-as-effective dept.
An anonymous reader writes "If we break a bone it can take weeks or even month to heal depending on the type and severity of the break. In some extreme cases the complexity of the fracture can make it impossible to heal properly. Researchers at the University of Georgia Regenerative Bioscience Center have come up with a new solution for healing broken bones that cuts recovery time to days. It relies on the use of stem cells that contain a bone generating protein. These cells are injected in gel form directly into the area of the broken bone, where they quickly get to work forming new bone. The end result is very rapid recovery, possibly sidestepping the muscle atrophy that can come with long bone healing times. The gel has been proven to work on animals as big as a sheep and has funding from the DoD. Lets hope it is proven to work on humans in the coming years."
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Fracture Putty Can Heal a Broken Bone In Days

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  • by advtech (176011) on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @04:34PM (#38959863) Homepage

    Can this putty pick up the comics section from the local newspaper as it heals your bones? If not, I'm out.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @04:39PM (#38959917)

    People creating "jackass" type TV shows and youtube videos are up %1000

  • Sheep (Score:4, Funny)

    by ChrisMaple (607946) on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @04:41PM (#38959943)
    I'd steer clear of anyone involved in bones and sheep.
  • by dutchwhizzman (817898) on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @04:41PM (#38959945)
    It'd be a bummer if you don't have a large supply of your own stem cells in your home fridge, or else this wouldn't work, or am I misinformed and you can use other peoples stem cells for this?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @04:41PM (#38959957)

    The question we're all afraid to ask:

    What happens if I rub this stuff on my penis?

  • by Ronin Developer (67677) on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @04:43PM (#38959983)

    I just spent six weeks in a cast after breaking my right arm Christmas Night (no...no rogue or drunk reindeer involved). There is now a titanium plate and six screws in my arm. My other wrist is broken also (yes...I fell and had a hell of hard time getting up). Now, I have to endure painful PT to regain full use of my arm again and have a 5 inch scar too (no...it is NOT cool).

    How I would have loved to have this stuff injected into the fractures and have it immobilized for a few days while it took action and fuzed the bones. I do hope this comes to fruition...cool stuff. Who said war wasn't useful?

    • by Hatta (162192) on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @04:53PM (#38960113) Journal

      . I do hope this comes to fruition...cool stuff. Who said war wasn't useful?

      Take all the money we spend on wars and spend it on R&D. We'll get a lot more cool stuff a lot faster. War is not useful. It's good for absolutely nothing.

      • by Intropy (2009018) on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @04:56PM (#38960149)

        Good God, y'all.

      • by pixelpusher220 (529617) on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @04:59PM (#38960193)

        War is not useful. It's good for absolutely nothing.

        No..it always has the minimum benefit of teaching Americans geography.

        • by SleazyRidr (1563649) on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @05:48PM (#38960697)

          No it doesn't, they just remember the names of places. The Chaser did a bit where they took a map and rewrote it so that Australia was labelled as either Iran or North Korea, then showed that map to Americans and asked them to located them. They just saw the name, and pointed at it saying "there it is!"

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Anonymous Coward

          I'm not so sure they're learning much geography from war. The last time, they were looking for a Saudi-Arabian man who attacked them from Afghanistan and went hiding in Pakistan, yet they went looking for him in Iraq.

      • by Daniel Dvorkin (106857) on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @05:03PM (#38960233) Homepage Journal

        Take all the money we spend on wars and spend it on R&D. We'll get a lot more cool stuff a lot faster. War is not useful. It's good for absolutely nothing.

        If the money not spent on war were spent instead on R&D, this would be true -- cut the DoD budget in half and give the money to NIH and NSF, and we'd have a boom in science and technology like none the world has ever seen. But politics doesn't work that way. The military wastes a hell of a lot of money, no question about it. It also spend a lot of money on very worthwhile research, and like it or not, it's easier to get Congress to appropriate that money for wounded soldiers. Who, regardless of your opinion on the way in which they were injured, deserve to have their wounds cared for as well as possible by the same government that sent them out to get injured in the first place.

        In the specific area of trauma care, the simple fact is that most of modern emergency and orthopedic medicine is an outgrowth of military medicine. Like it or not, next time you call 911, you'll have a much better chance of survival because of generations of work directed toward keeping wounded soldiers alive.

      • by thestudio_bob (894258) on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @05:21PM (#38960407)

        War is not useful. It's good for absolutely nothing.

        I don't know, they had some pretty solid hits ("Low Rider", "Spill the Wine", "The Cisco Kid" and "Why Can't We Be Friends?") and seem to have a fairly decent following. Just because you don't like American Funk, doesn't mean someone else doesn't.

    • I hear ya. I could've used this stuff 30+ years ago, when breaking bones was almost a monthly thing. Then again, I might've done even dumber things.

    • by Nyder (754090) on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @05:14PM (#38960337) Journal

      ... Who said war wasn't useful?

      Family members of the dead.

    • by jbb999 (758019)

      I broke my arm and dislocated my elbow in november. Looks like I'll make a complete recovery but it's quite painful and annoying.

      However the break isn't the problem, the plate and screws fix that. The problem is the dislocated elbow and the tissue damage and damage to tendons, muscles etc. That's what it takes time to recover from and I doubt that this will help with that part...

      Still sounds cool though !

    • by timeOday (582209) on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @05:50PM (#38960717)
      If I were an injured soldier, I might want a break. Perhaps athletes will be among the first adopters. If you want to find people who are often injured, and to whom recovery might be worth tens of thousands of dollars per day, look to the NFL.
    • by N3Bruce (154308)

      Amen Brother!!

      I really wish this discussion would take a more serious tone than boning sheep!

      I was involved in a serious car accident last May (I was the front seat passenger and the other driver was at fault), and which resulted in a compound fracture of my Tibia and Fibula. I spent 2 weeks in a trauma center followed by 3 weeks in a rehabilitation hospital, followed by months of physical therapy, and now wound care (the force of the impact ripped the front of my leg open). My most recent X-rays show inco

    • by Tarsir (1175373)
      Don't feel so bad. The treatment probably causes cancer.
    • Sorry man - I feel for you. Broke my scaphoid snowboarding 8 or 9 years ago (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scaphoid_fracture). It was in smithereens, really; a full break down the middle and another less-complete fracture offshooting from the center of that. Which ones did you break? The wrist, especially, has a lot of little bastards in a wee tiny bit of space, and anything needing pins in your other arm must have meant it was NASTY.

      In my case, I had the option to go with pins and a small supportive
  • by gcnaddict (841664) on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @04:43PM (#38959987)
    There exist treatments overseas for increasing a person's height which rely on repeatedly fracturing leg bones and spacing them such that they heal at a distance, essentially lengthening the bone.

    Do we have any osteopathologists on slashdot who can comment on whether this can theoretically shorten such a procedure's duration to make someone taller in a matter of one or two weeks? The current procedure takes at least a few months, if not a year.
    • by Intropy (2009018)

      I don't know anything about the topic, but I'd guess there are also limits on how quickly you can stretch out the other parts of your body like muscle, tendon, and skin.

    • by Belial6 (794905)
      That would be one way to get to a 'healthy weight'.
    • That treatment is not just overseas. I had a cousin undergo it when an earlier injury caused one of his legs to end up about two inches shorter than the other.
  • by fish_in_the_c (577259) on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @04:44PM (#38960007)

    Three nice things about them:

    1) They are usually harvested from the entity translated too so less problem with rejection ( is this the case here the article didn't say).
    2) The have been proven to work and use in many other places.
    3) No one has any moral objections to them.

    So many good reasons to not even worry about fetal stem cells , but no one ever bothers to talk about that.

  • large animals (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @04:57PM (#38960165)

    this would be great for horses. its nearly impossible to allow multi-leg fractures to heal properly with a large animal .. they usually just get put down.

    • by dzelenka (630044)

      this would be great for horses. its nearly impossible to allow multi-leg fractures to heal properly with a large animal .. they usually just get put down.

      This is the first thing I thought of too. There's big money around horses that could move this technology along.

  • There is also a product called 'kryptonite' which is often used for chest surgery which is like a compound glue that sets within 24 hours. Very much improved my heart surgery healing time but I also wish they used it on my knee to improve that repair time.
  • That's similar: (Score:4, Informative)

    by no-body (127863) on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @05:00PM (#38960195)

    Using stem cells for skin healing:

    http://www.thatvideosite.com/video/the_skin_gun [thatvideosite.com]

  • by TBedsaul (95979) on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @05:05PM (#38960247)

    Seems to me this would be a great benefit to veterinarians. The hardest part of treating a fracture in an animal is getting the patient to stay still while they recuperate. Would be a lot easier to do that for a couple of days vs. several weeks. Racehorses might be able to live with injuries that result in euthanasia now.

  • when they figure out a way to use this to make me some artificial bone wolverine like claws.

    • by gknoy (899301)

      You might be better off with a surgically implanted spike + extender. God knows how you'd ever manage to keep it sterile, let alone bind in the neural controls to make it work, but it's probably easier and simpler than growing bones plus muscles to extend things.

  • Is this anything like Skele-Gro? I understand it's very painful. "Regrowing bones is a nasty business," according to Madam Pomfrey.
  • not sure (Score:5, Funny)

    by no-body (127863) on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @05:15PM (#38960351)

    what bone fracture has to do with ssh....
    anyway - weird things exist nowadays

  • PuTTY (Score:5, Funny)

    by gnurfed (1051140) on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @05:35PM (#38960567)
    Is there ANYTHING a telnet/SSH client CAN'T do? :p
  • If this goes through, will pro sports allow the procedure? A tangential issue, but one that could be interesting.

  • by nurb432 (527695) on Tuesday February 07, 2012 @06:52PM (#38961299) Homepage Journal

    Well, if they had done their research they would find that it was proven long ago that artificially adding stem cells to healing bone works.

    It also forms new bone on amputees.

  • I want to use it to develop an exoskeleton!

If I have seen farther than others, it is because I was standing on the shoulders of giants. -- Isaac Newton

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