During these cold winter months you might like to strap yourself into some lovely fluffy socks, perhaps that your granny made you at Christmas. And now you can get special socks for donor organs and people with diabetes, according to a paper from Chemistry of Materials this week.
Itís not quite putting livers in jumpers and hepatic veins in booties but chemists this week have described how theyíve created a special fabric that can deliver nitric oxide to donor organs.
Nitric oxide is great in preventing damage to organs which arenít getting enough oxygen. Itís actually a molecule which many animal cells use to communicate with other cells. And one of the tasks nitric oxide performs is as a muscle relaxant, which means it can dilate blood vessels and increase blood flow. Actually, itís one of the signalling pathways that Viagra capitalises on.
So this fabric contains zeolites which are molecular cages of aluminium and silicon oxides. And those cages will soak up gas molecules like nitric oxide and then release them in a controlled manner. The way they make the bandage fabric is to construct a water-repellant polymer, then embed some of these zeolites in it. They can control how fast nitric oxide is released by making the polymer more or less water repellent. So to get the nitric oxide flowing you just need to add moisture.
And the scientists working on this, Kenneth Balkus and Harvey Liu at the University of Texas, are solving a problem here that many have struggled with before in medicine. Itís quite tricky to find reliable ways of storing and then delivering nitric oxide in a controlled manner. Because, as with many good things, too much is toxic.
So apart from wrapping donated organs ready for transplantation, the zeolite fabric could be used for people with diabetes, in whom itís been found that nitric oxide production is compromised. Wearing this fabric might increase blood flow in all sorts of extremities, and they could really benefit from some NO socks.
Thanks for spotting the typo RD - now fixed... BRValsler, Wed, 13th Jan 2010
"Actually, itís one of the signalling pathways that Viagra capitalises on."
Very good! chris, Wed, 13th Jan 2010
How far is this along? Are such fabrics on the market yet? (Huge fan of the show here!) Bacon Wizard, Fri, 3rd Sep 2010
So you put these on your feet and the NO tippy-toes through the epidermis to work its pharmacological action all over your little piggies? Now pull the other one. You wouldn't, by any chance, have something like a double blind randomized study to show how well these actually work?
Here is the original article
OK. Let's open this article and ask ourselves questions like real scientists would...
It just goes to prove the profound understanding my old man ( the door to door siding salesman ) had of the human mind. Some people were just plain born to be "fleeced". If those arguments seem sound to you, who am I to refute you with tiresome questions - like whoever told you that fairy story about NO crossing the epidermis freely? I wonder if you would kindly oblige me with some sort of factual reference outside the realm of Science Fiction.
OK.Your prof is flogging a book on Amazon called "Nitric Acid Protocols". Oooooh! Shiny! But I'm from Missouri (or at least I drove thru it last June)
You show me two articles showing that NO crosses membranes. That is not in dispute. The question at hand is whether or not NO crosses the epidermis (the skin barrier) which you have not shown...because no one has ever shown it to do so..and which simple logic tells us would be a miraculous phenomenon.
I wonder what part of this you are not understanding.....
The epidermal layer is composed of dead cells-whose function is to keep things (i.e. like NO molecules) out of the body.Your arguments about what happens in live cells simply do not apply to the case at hand. Why are you working so hard to try to confuse people? It is extremely dishonorable.
The wonderful world of science forums....
It was your original claim that NO crossed the skin barrier. I have thrice asked you to show some reputable source to support your claim and the best you can come up with is to ask me to prove that it doesn't. Apparently that's all you've got. I personally believe you, little buddy. (thousands wouldn't) I'm sure you will have a most interesting career in science
At this point I am reminded of the advice of Mark Twain, "Never argue with a fool because people passing by won't be able to tell the difference between you."
So instead of providing any sound arguments you are now trying to say it is my thesis??
Excuse me...I'm spending the day reading Huckleberry Finn again....You know, I could almost swear there's a guy just like you in it! MartinTheK, Sun, 5th Sep 2010
Really? Wow he must look odd with long hair and a large chest Variola, Sun, 5th Sep 2010
Careful BC, you will be asked if you are a real chemist and if you have anything to support that!
Oh. You guys are still going on with this little p***ing match. (Si voul ballere Signor Contino!)
The sun came up yesterday and today but, strictly speaking, it's false reasoning to assume that it will come up tomorrow.
I don't care how many papers you've read. I am the personal owner and operator of a penis that does not become erect...
You really are floundering now aren't you?
Let's consult the I Ching.
Ancient claptrap prevails.
Martin, do you realise that, since you can say "I am the personal owner and operator of a penis that does not become erect...
Res Ipsa Loquitur MartinTheK, Tue, 7th Sep 2010
I try not to brag about it. Geezer, Tue, 7th Sep 2010
Quod Erat Demonstrandum Geezer, Tue, 7th Sep 2010
Biggus Dickus. Variola, Tue, 7th Sep 2010
I knew there was a bit of legal Latin that (more or less) fitted the bill.
Res Ipsa Loquitur = the thing speaks for itself
You seem not to have understood the significance of the word "most" in your quote;
Hi folks! It's me MartinTheK.
Martin, this is getting worryingly close to nationalistic abuse.
Erm, perhaps we should lock this thread before it gets any more hostile? Geezer, Wed, 8th Sep 2010
Hey I only said I was going to frisk you up!!! Variola, Wed, 8th Sep 2010
So far, Martin seems to have insulted the American chemical society, several people on this forum (including me), one of their supervisors, any number of researchers whose published results he disdains, and the population of the UK.
Throughout the day I have wondered why I am so less tolerant of what many British people like to think of as "good manners". Why does it irritate me more lately?
"Now I am not going to read whatever posts have recently been made."
Since nitric oxide is slowly oxidised by air to NO2 and the mixed oxides of nitrogen are called NOx I think it's reasonable to call them NOx SOx or NOX SOX if you can't be bothered to find the subscript function. Bored chemist, Fri, 10th Sep 2010
I've done a deal with Variola. She's going to be sell them as:
Whoa! dude; that idea ROX. Bored chemist, Sat, 11th Sep 2010
Well, sometimes you just have to think outside the BOX. Geezer, Sat, 11th Sep 2010
"Summary research papers continue to flood the scientific journals and insights into the biological activity and potential clinical uses of nitric oxide (NO): a gas controlling a seemingly limitless range of functions in the body. Each revelation adds to nitric oxide's already lengthy resume in controlling the circulation of the blood, regulating activities of the brain, lungs, liver, kidneys, stomach and other organs.
So... Is putting NOx into one's socks supposed to make a person funnier?
Well, looking back on this discussion I am glad I didn't post at the time.