Surgical Glue Seals Wounds in a Minute

By: | October 19th, 2017

Surgical glue: MeTro

Image courtesy: University of Sydney

If you are afraid of getting stitches or staples, there is some good news for you. Scientists have developed a new type of highly elastic surgical glue that can seal wounds within a minute.

The glue is called MeTro (methacryloyl-substituted tropoelastin), and it’s tailored to be used on both internal and external wounds to seal them up and encourage healing.

Researchers behind this innovation say that this squirtable substance could prove to be a lifesaver in emergency situations and could eventually be used in surgeries.

Image courtesy: University of Sydney.

Science behind it: Natural elastic proteins based on the human protein tropoelastin were intermixed with a light-sensitive sealant material to develop this elastic surgical glue. Once the glue is applied to a wound, ultraviolet light is required to set the material.

MeTro has worked well in sealing incisions in the arteries and lungs of rodents and pigs.  However, it has yet to be tested on humans.

Study author Anthony Weiss, from the University of Sydney, said, “When you watch MeTro, you can see it act like a liquid, filling the gaps and conforming to the shape of the wound. It responds well biologically and interfaces closely with human tissue to promote healing. The gel is easily stored and can be squirted directly onto a wound or cavity.

“We have shown MeTro works in a range of different settings and solves problems other available sealants can’t,” he added. “We’re now ready to transfer our research into testing on people. I hope MeTro will soon be used in the clinic, saving human lives.”

Nidhi Goyal

Nidhi is a gold medalist Post Graduate in Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences. You can also find Nidhi on Google+.

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