A team of researchers at IIT Madras has developed a prototype of suture thread made of nano-fiber yarns that is bio-absorbable and can deliver a higher load of antibiotics and/or therapeutics at the site itself.
• Surgical suture is a medical thread used to hold body tissues together after an injury or surgery.
• The developed material uses nanofibers woven as yarn using certain specific techniques, and the strength can be varied depending on the target tissue (skin, muscle, cartilage).
• Each strand has a good tensile strength, besides degrading rapidly and mimics the collagen fibrils of body tissues.
• Several innovations globally in suture material have advanced infection control and achieved in some cases, better recovery among patients, even as other options such as staples, glues and strips have become available.
• Nanofiber yarns are thread-like structures formed by twisting together hundreds of nanofibers, thickness of single strand ranges around 10-9m.
• The way the nanofibers mimicked the collagen fibril sparked the idea in a lab that primarily works on scaffold-based tissue engineering to create thread like structures by twisting nano-fibers together using custom-made machinery.
• Several experiments were done to prove its compatibility, mechanical strength, stem cell interaction, immune responses, and antibacterial property, and they were compatible with prescribed norms in surgical procedure.
• The team also loaded the fibers to deliver drugs at site. It might be more suitable for internal sutures and on soft tissues. The bio absorbability aspect makes sure that the sutures do not have to be removed.
• Initial funding has been received for the project, and the team is looking for further funding to deliver surgery-ready nanofiber yarn at reasonable costs.
PEPPER IT WITH
Buckminsterfullerene, Liposomes, Graphene, Molecular Machines, Polymeric micelles