How plasma induced oxidation, oxygenation, and de-oxygenation influences viability of skin cells

Journal: Applied Physics Letters

Published: 2016-11-14

DOI: 10.1063/1.4967880

Affiliations: 10

Authors: 17

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Research Highlight

Plasma jets breathe life into cells

© ROGER HARRIS/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY/Getty

© ROGER HARRIS/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY/Getty

Modifying oxygen levels in cells could improve the effectiveness of cold plasma jet treatment in wound healing and cancer therapy.

Plasma jets of inert gases such as helium interact with air to generate highly reactive oxygen and nitrogen species (RONS) that promote cell death, growth and movement. RONS are directed towards target tissues by a separate helium gas jet. A team including a researcher from the University of South Australia found that the jets themselves affect the health of human skin cells. The helium flowing through the lab-grown cells removed oxygen by “sparging” — a process also used by beer brewers to extract sugar from grains. The plasma jet added or removed oxygen depending on the cell’s initial oxygen levels.

A lack of oxygen restricts a cell’s ability to grow. Tweaking the combination and duration of the two jets enabled the team to raise or lower oxygen levels. This could help determine whether incoming RONS help or hinder tissue regeneration.

Supported content

  1. Applied Physics Letters 109, 203701 (2016). doi: 10.1063/1.4967880
Institutions FC
Future Industries Institute, UniSA, Australia 0.29
Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, Meijo University, Japan 0.12
Department of Electronic and Photonic Systems Engineering, Kochi University of Technology, Japan 0.12
Kochi Medical School, Japan 0.12
ANU Research School of Physics and Engineering (RSPE), Australia 0.12
Center for Nanotechnology, Kochi University of Technology, Japan 0.06
Department of Electrical Engineering and Electronics, University of Liverpool, United Kingdom (UK) 0.06
Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering (CBE), UC Berkeley, United States of America (USA) 0.06
Materials Science Institute, Lancaster University, United Kingdom (UK) 0.03
Wound Management Innovation CRC (WMI CRC), Australia 0.03

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