New biodegradable gauze for better wound healing

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Researchers from the universities of Hasselt, Liege, Aachen and Maastricht developed new ‘plastics’ that are biodegradable by the body and which could replace the traditional gauze bandage for wounds. These novel materials have fewer side effects like inflammation, clotting or irritations. The scientists are also working on a material for targeted delivery and slow release of active compounds. The new plastics will be tested on living organisms and might be able to accelerate healing. The project received 6.9 million euros funding from the EU.

“Conventional materials, such as gauze in abdominal surgery, cause undesired side effects like inflammation, clotting and irritation. These are still used too often today,” says Prof. Luc Michiels from Biomed (UHasselt).

“You should not only develop a new material that can easily be implanted in the human body. The material should also ensure that the built-in medication gets delivered to the right place in the body,” adds Professor Thomas Junkers of Imo-IMOMEC. Four patents cover the new technology, on which a new spin-off company is working in Liège.