Scientists from the United States and Australia have developed an elastic and adhesive surgical glue known as MeTro, which could heal wounds in the skin and organs in 60 seconds. No need for the common staples or sutures. This could change the functioning in surgeries and save more lives, particularly in the emergency.
The description of the new creation was published in Science Translational Medicine. The discovery was led by researchers from the University of Sydney’s Charles Perkins Center and Faculty Science, the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard University, Boston’s Northeastern University, and the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) in Boston, according to Eurekalert.
MeTro or methacryloyl-substituted tropoelastin is a liquid or gel-like material and a hybrid elastic protein that can be squeezed onto internal and external wounds, which could heal fast. Its high elasticity is good for healing wounds in body tissues that enlarge and relax such as hearts, lungs and arteries.
Science Alert reports that the elastic surgical glue could seal the wound in 60 seconds once it is activated with ultraviolet light to fix it firmly. The glue was tested in animals such as rodents and prigs. It effectively sealed incisions in the arteries and lungs of rodents and the lungs of pigs, without needing the sutures and staples.
Nasim Annabi, the lead author of the study and the assistant professor of the Department of Chemical Engineering at Northeastern University, said that the beauty of the MeTro formulation is that, once it is attached to tissue surfaces, it solidifies into a gel-like phase without running away. Then, they stabilize it by curing it on-site using a short light-mediated crosslinking treatment. With this, the sealant is placed accurately and tightly bond and interlock with structures on the tissue surface, according to Prof. Annabi.
Meanwhile, Anthony Weiss, the professor from the University of Sydney, said that the surgical glue has powerful potential applications from treating serious internal wounds at emergency sites, car accidents and in war zones. He further said that it will improve hospital surgeries.
The scientists are hoping that MeTro will also soon be used in the clinic. They are also planning to test MeTro on people. If this will work on humans, MeTro will certainly save lives.
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