Scientists Develop Nanochip That Turns Skin Into Brain Cells

The wonders of modern science know no bounds. Scientists in the U.S. have managed to grow brain cells from skin cells. They are now using tissue nanotransfection — also known as TNT — to grow brain cells on human skin. As a result, the skin can perform different functions, including boosting one’s cognitive abilities.

Tissue Nanotransfection is an Interesting Concept

The human skin is not something most people think about too often, despite it being the body’s largest organ. We know it keeps our other organs inside of our body and protects us from cold, heat, and other weather conditions. It can also grow hair all over — and even more in certain places — to give us better protection against external threats. However, what it does under the hood is a major mystery to most people walking around on the surface of this planet. That may change pretty quickly thanks to a procedure called tissue nanotransfection.

Scientists have been enamored with this concept for some time now. Being able to make the human skin perform various tasks based on evolving needs would unlock seemingly limitless possibility. The concept of using a microchip to grow brain cells on one’s skin may not sound all that appealing, but it should not be dismissed out of hand either. It is this chip which could make your skin perform all sorts of different functions, including improving your cognitive capabilities for a brief period of time.

Implanting chips within the human body is still a controversial idea. That stigma will remain present for quite some time, but developments such as tissue nanotransfection may help change things for the better. Harnessing this power through embedded microchips will allow humans to grow whatever type of cells they need at any given time. It can be used to speed up recovery from injury, fight off diseases, or even improve your brain capacity. That last one sounds a bit scary, but it could certainly have its benefits.

The nanochip in question was developed by researchers at the Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center. This chip uses a small electric current to deliver DNA to living skin cells, and effectively reprogramming them. Touch the chip to a wounded area, for example, and remove it immediately afterwards: the affected cells will start to heal faster and ensure the patient can recover more quickly. It will be interesting to see how human hosts respond to such treatment.

According to Nature Nanotechnology, this technique has been tested successfully on both pigs and mice. Introducing new blood vessels to badly injured limbs saved them from losing said limbs due to lackluster blood flow. Additionally, the same technology has been used to create nerve cells from skin which can then be harvested and injected into animals with brain injuries to help them recover. It shows a lot of potential for the future.

This new method ensures that immune suppression is no longer a necessity for the cells in question. It also bypasses the conversion from skin to stem cell by transforming directly into whichever cell is needed at any given time. This is a very big leap and may ultimately alter the way we think about health care altogether. The goal now is to successfully test the system using human hosts and see how things play out in the long run.