Scientists at the University of Wisconsin–Madison have developed a biodegradable, electro-stimulating implant that can speed wound healing, including bone fractures. Xudong Wang, professor of materials science and engineering, and collaborators including Weibo Cai, professor of radiology and medical physics, created the device that’s self-powered, implantable and bioresorbable, so once the bone is knitted back together, the device’s components dissolve within the body. Bone is a piezoelectric material that produces a tiny bit of electricity when placed under strain. This stimulates factors that promote bone growth and healing, which explains why electrostimulation is an effective therapy. Wang and his co-researchers described the new bone-healing device in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Photo: UW–Madison/Jason Daley.