London: American scientists have created little patches of 'electronic skin' that might heal wounds and monitor a patient's heart rate in the near future.

“What we are trying to do here is to really reshape and redefine electronics...to look a lot more like the human body, in this case the surface layers of the skin,” said John A. Rogers of the University of Illinois, US.
 
“The goal is really to blur the distinction between electronics and biological tissue,” he said,
 
Researchers implanted sensors in a film thinner than a human hair, which was placed on a polyester backing like those used for the temporary tattoos popular with children, reports the journal Science.  
 
The result was a sensor that was flexible enough to move with the skin and would stick without glue, according to sources.

Researchers said the devices could stick up to 24 hours. While normal shedding of skin cells would cause the monitors to come off, Rogers expected the new devices to remain in place for two weeks.
 
Besides monitoring patients, the devices could monitor brain waves, muscle movement, sensing the larynx for speech, emitting heat to help heal wounds and perhaps even being made touch sensitive and placed on artificial limbs, Rogers said.
 
(Agencies)