Shellfish Super Glue May Aid Fetal Surgery

July 26, 2016
UC Berkeley bio-engineers are inspired by mussels’ ability to attach to submarine surfaces to develop a potent surgical glue.

Mussels’ ability to stick to submarine surfaces provided the inspiration for UC Berkeley bio-engineers to design and develop a new kind of surgical glue, according to an article from San Francisco Bay Area CBS.  The glue reportedly sticks and stays stuck underwater, an ability that may help improve outcomes in fetal surgery.

With fetal surgery, doctors make an incision in a pregnant woman’s uterus, which can later be compromised and trigger premature birth. No medical adhesive currently exists that can reliably seal the incision, according to the article. UC Berkeley mimicked the special protein tethers that shellfish lay down in order to anchor to a surface to create their own mussel super glue. The glue needs FDA approval before it can be used in fetal surgery, according to the article. The National Institutes of Health funded the research.

Read the entire article here.

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