Wired, electronic temporary tattoos may have started off as fun novelties, but a new type of stick-on, nanotech “tattoo” has already found some practical medical applications. According to a new study published in the journal Scientific Reports, researchers from Tel Aviv University have developed a thin, non-invasive carbon electrode that can be placed on the skin to measure muscle and nerve activity and could soon be used to help restore damaged tissue.

According to the American Friends of Tel Aviv University, the electrode’s developer Professor Yael Hanein created the device as an alternative to electromyography — an “uncomfortable and unpleasant medical procedure” that requires electrodes stuck directly into muscle tissue or unseemly surface electrodes and sticky gel. “Our tattoo permits patients to carry on with their daily routines, while the electrode monitors their muscle and nerve activity,” Prof. Hanein explained. “The idea is: stick it on and forget about it.” FULL REPORT