Mar. 11, 2013
Scientists have long been on the hunt for a compound that can quickly clot and close open wounds to stop bleeding, stave off infection and begin the healing process.
We’ve previously reported on MIT “biocoating” that researchers hope will stop bleeding soldiers in the field in under a minute. Then there’s “Veti-Gel,” a synthetic substance that helps hold cells together and triggers clotting.
Veti-Gel has been in development for the last few years by students at Polytechnic Institute of New York University (NYU-Poly), their startup Suneris and Englewood Hospital in New Jersey. The gel, NYU-Poly student Joe Landolina told Tech News Daily in a recent article, “tells the body, ‘OK, stop the bleeding’[…].” He went on to say that it helps begin the healing process as well.
Here’s more about how the technology works:
Veti-Gel (also sometimes called Medi-Gel) is a synthetic form of the extracellular matrix, or ECM, the substance that forms a kind of scaffolding in the body that holds cells together and also triggers the clotting process if there is an injury. In tests on rats, Landolina was able to close up a slice into the liver and a puncture of the carotid artery. (He plans to publish the results in about two months.)
Plants naturally produce a material similar to the human extracellular matrix, but Landolina improves the process by using genetically modified plants to create Veti-Gel. Other wound treatments, such as collagen, come from animals, he said. And some rival treatments require refrigeration. Veti-Gel can be kept in packets or tubes at any temperature from 33 degrees to about 90 degrees Fahrenheit (1 degree to 32 degrees Celsius).