Science and Technology in Medicine
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ISTM Seminar: 10 May 2017
Professor Sheila MacNeil from the Department of Materials Science and Engineering, University of Sheffield was invited to deliver a seminar on "translating biomaterials and cell therapy to the clinic." She attended the Guy Hilton Research Centre on Wednesday 10 May and presented to a full house. Sheila is an excellent example of a scientist who has worked closely with surgeons to deliver new therapies to the clinic.
Professor MacNeil has been involved in delivering cell therapy to the clinic since 1992. This started with an interaction with the Burns Unit in a Sheffield hospital where she cultured autologous epithelial keratinocytes for patients with extensive full thickness burns. After a 10 year audit of this it became clear there was room for improvement. Improvements on the cell delivery system were made and a carrier system, Myskin™, was developed through a spin out company, CellTran Ltd. The development of the carrier was only possible because of sustained support from surgeons in the Burns Unit and then later colleagues working with diabetic ulcers. A small single-blind study demonstrating that MySkin offered benefit to patients with diabetic ulcers was publishsed. The product, Myskin™, has been used by 11 out of the 13 Burns Units in the UK and has been on the market for a decade now.