BEIJING, April 24 – The scientists yesterday unveiled a battery-free pacemaker that generates its energy from the heartbeats of pigs, paving the way for an implant in people suffering from heart disease of life "can flatten defects.
Millions of patients rely on pacemakers – small electrical implants in the abdomen – to regulate their heartbeat after a chronic or acute illness.
Even with the latest technological advances, pacemaker batteries may be rigid or bulky. It may be necessary to replace the life of a device several times.
Energy harvesters that generate electricity from body impulses have proven effective in recent years, but only in small animals such as rats and cell models with low energy requirements.
Now researchers in China and the US believe they have successfully tested a self-propelled pacemaker on adult pigs – an animal that is remarkably physiologically simulated similar to humans.
The selected animals suffered from an irregular heartbeat similar to pacemaker patients.
The team developed an implantable generator that sits on the surface of the heart and bends with each heartbeat, generating electricity from kinetic energy.
"(The pacemaker) was fully implanted in adult pigs, and all the energy for pacing is derived from the heartbeat energy of the same animal," said Zhou Li of the Chinese Academy of Sciences and senior study author. told AFP.
When they turned on the devices, they found that the irregular heartbeat of the pigs had been corrected.
In addition, the energy retained by each heartbeat was found to be higher than the energy required by most current pacemakers in humans. He opened the door to one day give the patient a permanent source of energy for their implants.
"It could be an & # 39; implant for life," Zhou said. "This is our goal and the ultimate goal of scientific research in this field."
However, the team emphasized that more work was needed to determine the long-term safety and durability of the devices before human versions could be developed
Zhou said the self-powering technology could also provide a number of applications in areas like self-charging devices and "smart" clothing.
Tim Chico, Professor of Cardiovascular Medicine and Honorary Consultant Cardiologist, University of Sheffield, who was not involved in the research, called the experiment "very encouraging."
"This study was conducted on pigs whose hearts are the same size as humans and are therefore commonly used to test devices or treatments prior to use," he said.
The study was published in the journal Nature Communications published – AFP-Relaxnews