This week in adhesive news, researchers at the University of California Berkeley have received funding to develop a medical adhesive for fetal surgery. Phillip Messersmith, engineer and head researcher, is studying the natural adhesive used by mussels to stay attached to rocks and boats as a starting point for an adhesive that holds while under water and—more to his research—immersed in amniotic fluid to help keep the amniotic sac of a fetus intact during surgery. Working with UCSF pediatric surgeon Michael Harrison, the researchers hope to develop an adhesive that will keep the amniotic sac from rupturing during fetal surgery that can lead to pre-term labor and the death of the fetus. Their recent experiments were published in the May edition of the Journal of the Mechanical Behavior of Biomedical Materials.
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