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Study discovers key to baby-like skin

premature infants who are born before vernix develops at about 27 weeks; as a cream or lotion for topical needs; and as a delivery system for other medications.

We view the production of vernix as analogous to infant formula as a substitute for milk, says Dr. Visscher. Nature has figured out how to make it. Long term, we hope to be able to mass produce a synthetic equivalent. There is nothing out there now to take care of these preterm babies, and the list of other applications for vernix is endless.

The Skin Sciences Institute views infant skin as ideal skin and focuses on the skin as a primary care interface a biological spacesuit that separates outer from inner space. Skin is the largest organ in the body, yet its often treated as insignificant, says Stephen Hoath, MD, a neonatologist, medical director of the Skin Sciences Institute and co-author of the study. You cant deliver medical care in the home or hospital without paying attention to this interface, and it has a disproportionate impact on patient satisfaction. People assume you can transplant a liver, but if you cant pull leads off without hurting them, youre not providing good care.


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Contact: Jim Feuer
jim.feuer@cchmc.org
513-636-4656
Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center
6-May-2003


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