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Medicine Biotech

Mending Hearts With Light-Activated Glue 38

the_newsbeagle writes "When surgeons set out to repair holes in the walls of the heart's chambers or in blood vessels, they often do invasive open-heart surgery and use sutures, staples, and glue to keep a patch in place. But the sutures and staples are a rough fix, and many of the glues on the market today don't work well on wet tissue that's continually flexed by the heart's contractions and the movement of pumping blood. Today biomaterial researchers announced a new light-activated glue that could make surgery less invasive, quicker, and easier. The adhesive was inspired by slugs' and sandcastle worms' sticky secretions, which work underwater, and it can be applied with slender tools during minimally invasive surgery. A flash of UV light then sets the glue, which bends and flexes with the tissue."
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Mending Hearts With Light-Activated Glue

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  • by cold fjord ( 826450 ) on Wednesday January 08, 2014 @06:07PM (#45901937)

    Light-activated resin []

  • by wcrowe ( 94389 ) on Wednesday January 08, 2014 @06:17PM (#45902023)

    I cracked a tooth and got a crown a couple of years ago, and this is how the crown was attached, using a light-activated adhesive.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 08, 2014 @06:46PM (#45902215)

    UV set resins have been around for a long time. This new one seems particularly good for adhering to flexing and wet human tissues. It's the same basic concept as the one used on your teeth but specially tailored for a different application.

  • Re:Weird science (Score:5, Informative)

    by DoofusOfDeath ( 636671 ) on Wednesday January 08, 2014 @08:10PM (#45902951)

    One would think, but no. The prime wrong-doer in this case is Sen. Tom Coburn, of "shrimp on treadmills" mischaracterization infamy. NPR did a story on this recently. []

    It appears that Coburn knowingly omits context that would put these research projects in a much different light. Coburn is a prime example of politicians who appear to put politics above governance. He truly makes me wish there was a law which would put a bullet in any Congressman who made sophistic arguments in the course of deliberation.

  • by The Grim Reefer ( 1162755 ) on Wednesday January 08, 2014 @08:16PM (#45903015)

    When surgeons set out to repair holes in the walls of the heart's chambers or in blood vessels,

    There are already transcatheter VSD/ASD occulders [] that are minimally invasive (considering)and fairly well proven. They are used all the time to repair congenital defects. I am assuming that they are talking about repairing ventricular septal defects, or atrial.septal defects Since a hole in the free wall of the heart is going to kill you pretty damn fast, and will generally be caused by some type of trauma. In which case you probably have to have foreign material removed as well. I'm not as familiar with what is available for vascular repair once it's ruptured, so this sounds pretty cool. It looks like it may be more elegant than an occulder, but the images show a clamp being used. So using this, for now, means cracking the chest open. I'd say that going into the cath lab for a ASD/VSD repair is still a better option. But if they can shrink this down to the point they can fish this stuff up through the femoral artery, it will be very cool indeed.

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