SCIENTISTS at a Welsh university are working on a "next generation" artificial lung using futuristic nanotechnology.
The "portable lung" being developed at Swansea University has the potential to save millions of lives across the world.
It also promises to save the NHS hundreds of millions of pounds.
The device, a blood/air mass exchanger, integrates with the body's respiratory system and is designed to breathe for conscious, mobile patients whose lungs are damaged or diseased.
As a portable device, it will allow patients to recover outside intensive care units, offering them a better quality of life and saving the NHS money.
The unit could also be taken to patients in emergency situations allowing their damaged lungs to "rest" as the artificial unit takes over. It could be used by military medical units to keep alive soldiers affected by chemical weapons which often target the lungs.