Engineering Innovation Podcast and Radio Series

Integrated Punch Biopsy

PostedMay 6, 2012

Download File (mp3)

Anchor Lede: After a nationwide competition, a dozen student teams were recently selected to showcase innovative engineering projects by the National Collegiate Inventors and Innovators Alliance.

Randy Atkins: A Baltimore team hopes to improve punch biopsies, the most common technique for getting skin samples that includes all layers. The procedure involves several tools – a circular blade, a punch tool, forceps, scissors – and Nishant Kumar, a junior at Johns Hopkins University, says…

Nishant Kumar: …depending on the expertise of the dermatologist, you could sometimes damage the integrity of the skin sample.

Randy Atkins: Kumar’s team engineered a simple all-in-one punch device. Once inserted into the target skin sample, its innovation is a wire mechanism that acts like a cheese cutter.

Nishant Kumar: It just cuts the skin at the bottom, so it separates the skin from the tissue underneath.

Randy Atkins: And pulls out a cleanly cut sample. With the National Academy of Engineering, Randy Atkins, WTOP News.

Anchor Tag: The technique, which Kumar says would be much less expensive, is still in lab testing.