Fish Bandages, Fireworks (Abstract Science: June 26 – 30)
Jillian Scola

Fish Bandages, Fireworks (Abstract Science: June 26 – 30)

Fish skin may be the answer, the science behind fireworks and catching cancer in real time.

How do fireworks get their color and shape?

(Washington State Journal, 6/27/2017)

I don’t think it’s a surprise to anyone that fireworks actual contain…fire. To get a fire you need fuel, oxygen and heat, and that’s true in fireworks also. The fuels used in fireworks are solids, most commonly carbon and sulfur.  In fireworks, you need the carbon and sulfur to burn rapidly and need to provide much more oxygen to accomplish that. In making fireworks, you add a compound, like potassium chlorate, that contains a lot of oxygen that will be released when it gets hot. The fireworks’ colors come from another ingredient in the mixture, a salt. Different salts produce different colors.


Fish Skin for Human Wounds

(Bloomberg Businessweek, 6/27/2017, Lois Parshley)

There is a human wound treatment on the scene and it involves fish skin.  The U.S. Food and Drug Administration-approved Kerecis is a fish skin treatment that reduces inflammation and transforms chronic wounds into acute injuries. The materials in fish skin, particularly omega-3 fatty acids, yield natural anti-inflammatory effects that speed healing. When placed on wounds, the product, made from dried and processed fish skin, works as an extracellular matrix, a group of proteins and starches that plays a crucial role in recovery.


A New Optical System Can Detect Cancer in Real Time

(AACR Newsroom, 6/28/2017)

Researchers have unveiled a novel multimodal optical cancer detection system that appears to be able to maximize cancer cell detection during surgery.  There is a need for the development of highly sensitive and specific cancer detection instruments that can be seamlessly integrated into clinical practice. The new technology holds promise to impact a wide range of surgical and noninvasive interventional oncology procedures by improving cancer detection capabilities.  In the future, the technology will be tested in clinical trials designed across a larger patient population and for a variety of cancer types, looking at residual cancer following surgical intervention, diagnostic accuracy, progression-free survival, and overall survival.



—Compiled by Social Media Specialist Jillian Scola