Military scientists have invented spray-on skin: By applying a thin film of stem cells over a burn victim's wound, they can regrow skin in a matter of days. National Geographic documents one man's recovery.
Jörg Gerlach, a researcher with the McGown Institute for Regenerative Medicine, explained the technology to National Geographic's Explorer: Doctors mix stem cells from the patient's healthy skin with water to create a serum, which they then load into the skin cell gun and apply "like paint spray" to the wounded area. The result is likened to a salamander growing a new tail: The tissue regenerates. A clip is below. Warning: It contains graphic medical images.
Matthew Uram, a Pennsylvania state police officer, is one of the first people to use the gun. After suffering third-degree burns from a bonfire gone awry, Uram's doctors used the skin cell gun on him: "They did it on a Friday, and my follow up was that Monday, and the burn unit said it was healed. Completely healed." He described the technology as "like Star Wars." [National Geographic]