Tattoo Removal Cream: Canadian Student Comes Up With A New Pain-Free Way Of Removing Tattoos

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A tattoo expert and a policeman (L) point at one of the pictures of body parts found in parcels as they address reporters in Bangkok November 17, 2014. Thai police said on Monday two Americans suspected of trying to send infant and adult body parts in par
A tattoo expert and a policeman (L) point at one of the pictures of body parts found in parcels as they address reporters in Bangkok November 17, 2014. Thai police said on Monday two Americans suspected of trying to send infant and adult body parts in parcels to the United States had fled the country. A baby's head, a baby's foot sliced into three parts, a heart and a "sheet of skin" with tattoo markings were found in parcels on Saturday after staff at a shipping office in Bangkok scanned the packages, police said. REUTERS/Chaiwat Subprasom (THAILAND - Tags: SOCIETY CRIME LAW POLITICS)

A tattoo-removal cream developed by a Canadian student could be the most pain-free method that has been developed recently. The method could also be economical and it just involves the user to apply the cream on the tattoo and then the user would get rid of it. 

The new cream targets tattoos because of macrophages, which are immune response and cells that are caused because of ink being injected into the skin when a tattoo is made. The cells moved to the area with the tattoo for "eating" the ink up. A few of the cells carried the tattoo to the lymph nodes in the body, while others over-ate and stayed in the skin, leading to the formation of the tattoo. 

The cream made new microphages so that it could consume the microphages that were filled with ink. The cream caused the process to start from the beginning and then resulted in the tattoo fading slowly. 

Alec Falkenham, a Canadian student of pathology who invented the cream, told CBC that when comparing the tattoo-removal cream to laser-based removal, the solution that his team has developed did not seem to have an off-target effect. In the case of the laser-based removal, effects like burns, blisters and scarring were seen. 

He went on to say that they were not targeting normal skin cells, because of which, lots of inflammation won't be seen. He said that actually, the process they were using would be anti-inflammatory. 

Falkenham wasn't sure how many applications of the cream would be required for the tattoo to fade away because it was still in the testing phase. He also said that it would cost about 4 cents per square centimeter, which meant that for an area of 10 by 10 centimetres, it would cost $4.50. He added that it would work best in tattoos which are older than two years.

Andrea McCormic is the manager of health and life sciences at Dalhousie University in Nova Scotia. He said that Alec was a trailblazer in tattoo-removal. He said that he approached the Industry Liaison and Innovation at the Dalhousie University with an idea that was related to his graduate research and had applicability to real life as well. He added that the initial research had shown great results and Alec's next stage of research would build up on the results to develop the technology into a product so that it could be introduced in the market. 

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