Russian scientists on the Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology (MIPT), the Joint Institute For High Temperatures of the Russian Academy of Sciences (JIHT RAS), and Gamaleya studies Centre of Epidemiology and Microbiology determined that treating cells with cold plasma therapy results in their regeneration and rejuvenation. This result can be used to develop a plasma therapy method for sufferers with non-healing wounds. The paper has been posted in the journal of Physics D: Applied Physics.
Non-healing wounds make it hard to offer powerful remedies to patients and are consequently a serious problem confronted by health practitioners. These wounds can be resulting from damage to blood vessels in the case of diabetes, failure of the immune system attributable to HIV infection or cancers, or sluggish cell divisions in elderly people. Treatment of non-healing wounds by way of conventional methods is very tough and in some cases impossible.
Cold atmospheric-pressure plasma refers to a partially ionized gas with a temperature below 100,000 k. Its use in biology and medicine has been made feasible by means of the appearance of plasma sources generating jets at 30-40°C.
An earlier study has found out the bactericidal properties of cold plasma, in addition to the noticeably high resistance of cells and tissues to its effects. The consequences of plasma therapy of patients with non-healing wounds are oftentimes positive to neutral. The authors’ previous work caused them to research the possibility that the impact of plasma treatment on wound recuperation should depend upon how it is being applied.
There are two types of cells that have been used in this study: fibroblasts (connective tissue cells) and keratinocytes (epithelial cells). Each play a critical position in wound recovery.
The effect of plasma treatment on cells was evaluated. In fibroblast samples, the quantity of cells increased by 42.6% after one application (A) and by 32% after two applications (B), in comparison to the untreated controls. While no DNA breaks had been detected following plasma application, an accumulation of cells inside the active stages of the cell cycle was determined, along with an extended growth phase (30 hours), which means that the impact of plasma could be characterized as regenerative.
The proliferation of cells that were treated everyday over a period of 3 days (group C) was reduced to 29.1% relative to the controls. Keratinocytes did no longer display significant changes in proliferation.
The researchers also carried out an assay of the senescence-related ?-galactosidase that was measured at pH 6.0. The concentration of this enzyme in a cell increases with age. Plasma treatment notably decreased the content of this substance inside the samples. This, together with a prolonged exponential boom section of the way of life, indicates a practical activation of cells — their rejuvenation.
According to Elena Petersen, a co-author of the paper and the head of the Laboratory of Cellular and Molecular Technologies at MIPT, ’The positive response to plasma treatment that we observed could be linked to the activation of a natural destructive mechanism called autophagy, which removes damaged organelles from the cell and reactivates cellular metabolic processes.
The scientists are planning additional studies into the molecular mechanisms underlying the effects of plasma on cells. Additionally they want to decide the effects of an affected person’s age on the effectiveness of plasma therapy.