All Rights Reserved. Lee Spievack took his brother's advice to forget about a skin graft and try the pig powder. Speivak's brother, Alan - who was working in the field of regenerative medicine - sent him some powder which Lee calls pixie dust. Pig parts were in abundance in butcher-happy Indiana near Purdue University where Dr. Badylak first began the research. Good for fungal infections, nail loss and rapid nail growth. As the material’s name, the extracellular matrix implies, it is the mix of chemicals that fills the space surrounding the body’s cells. It helps horses regrow ligaments, for example, and the federal government has given clearance to market it for use in people. As we’ve discussed before, even genetically-identical cells derived from the patient can be problematic. For fingertip regeneration after accidental amputation. A powder nick-named "Pixie Dust" is being used to save the limbs of war heroes who have been wounded in Afghanistan. The decision to use extracellular matrix from pig bladders was not a scientific one, but an economic one. Activated stem cells help to rapidly regenerate amputated fingertips. The summer before Lee Spievack's accident, Dr. Alan Spievack had used it on a neighbor who'd cut his fingertip off on a tablesaw. And I put my finger through the prop.". About six weeks after the surgery the Marine began to feel his strength returning. Similar formulations have been used in many people to do things like treat ulcers and other wounds and help make cartilage. For the next four years the Corporal underwent multiple surgeries and constant physical therapy, but his leg wasn’t getting stronger. Soon a shipment of the stuff arrived and Lee Spievack started applying it every two days. Surgeons have already used the … Miracle Powder Regrows Fingers, Now Thigh Muscle for Marine. China Wants to Be the World’s AI Superpower. Dr. Badylak treated Kulkarni for seven weeks with MatriStem and the fingertip returned. The nail continues to grow at twice the speed of his other nails. Watch the video above for more details on the procedure. This Week’s Awesome Tech Stories From Around the Web (Through January 16), 2020 in Neuroscience, Longevity, and AI—and What’s to Come. Pig powder may be the magic bullet for regeneration of injured and missing body parts from about AD2020 onwards. Following an intense physical therapy program to strengthen the 30 percent of muscle he had left, doctors made an incision deep into Hernandez’s thigh and applied the extracellular matrix. It’s a complex mixture of hormones, structural proteins, and other molecules that maintain the health and function of the cells, as well as mediates cell-to-cell communication. The fact that the extracellular matrix recruits the body’s own stem cells is huge because it obviates the need to introduce stem cells from an outside source. 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