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Purdue researchers develop surgical adhesive that could replace stitches and staples


By Jesse Schwartz
Published: October 3rd, 2018

Researchers at Purdue University are developing a new surgical adhesive that could provide a less damaging alternative to stitches and staples.

The technology is made up of a family of proteins and a modified amino acid which together form a strong elastic bond between the soft tissues being joined. The issue with most adhesives is that they fail to stick when in contact with water, making them practically useless in the human body. The researchers took inspiration from the natural glues produced by mussels and other underwater organisms.

“Our team had to come up with ways to bond soft tissues within a wet environment that are non-toxic and biocompatible,” says Julie Liu of the Purdue research team. “We are taking a giant leap in health care research by creating something totally new.”

The technology has a number of advantages over stitches and staples, such as reduced patient discomfort, lower risk of infection and minimized damage to surrounding healthy tissue.

The team is working with the Purdue Office of Technology Commercialization to patent the novel adhesive and is currently seeking partners to license it.

Source: Purdue Research Foundation News

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