Jelly Skin

Got a boo-boo? Call Dr. Jellyfish! 

This is Sandra Tsing Loh with The Loh Down on Science.

Our amazing skin! It covers our whole body, protecting us from germs and damage. Is there a way to help our skin heal? 

Enter Nayeli Rodriguez-Fuentes from the Yucatan Center for Scientific Research in Mexico. The upside-down jellyfish found in the Gulf of Mexico caught her team’s attention. Its skin is very similar to ours. The researchers wondered – could this be a recipe for healing?

First, they went jelly-fishing on a Yucatan beach. They freeze-dried and bleached the jellies. This transformed the jellyfish skin into a flexible, porous material called a scaffold. Scientists then tested if HUMAN skin cells would survive on a JELLYFISH scaffold. 

Results? The human skin cells LOVED their new home! After a week, the number of cells increased two-fold. Rodriguez-Fuentes hopes to use this skin-growing process to treat diabetic foot ulcers and other conditions. 

So, jellyfish to soothe the skin — jelly donuts to soothe the soul! Sounds about right!