Up to 8 million people die from sepsis or blood poisoning in the world every year. The reason is the rapid multiplication of deadly fungi and infections in the blood, against which even powerful modern antibiotics are powerless.
The Wyss Institute at Harvard University has developed a blood purifier called the biosplin. Its principle of operation reproduces the function of the human spleen. Within a few hours, the device filters out living and dead pathogens in the blood, which are dangerous to life.
In current medical practice, establishing the type of infection and prescribing an antibiotic can take several days, which the patient may not survive. Biosplin works on the principle of dialysis and removes all germs and toxins indiscriminately.
Biosplin is a microfluidic device consisting of two adjacent hollow channels connected by a system of holes. Blood flows through one of the channels, and a saline solution flows through the other, which removes pathogens passing through the holes. The main function is performed by magnetic nanospheres coated with a special layer that mimics the action of the mannose protein lectin, which is part of the human immune system.
Currently, laboratory experiments are being carried out with rats, which were infected with E-coli, staphylococcus and dangerous toxins. 5 hours after the start of filtration, up to 90% of bacteria and toxins are killed.
According to the researchers, the device will be able to purify the blood from a wide variety of viruses and bacteria: from E. coli to the causative agent of Ebola.