Jello-like material could improve artificial joints, contact lensesMarch 23rd, 2008 - 11:41 am ICT by admin
Washington, Mar 23 (ANI): An unusual Jello-like material made mostly of water could have the potential to improve everything from artificial joints to contact lenses.
Developed by scientists in the United States and Japan, the material is a hydrogel and is surprisingly resilient.
“Most hydrogels are like gelatin; you touch them and they break into pieces,” Discovery News quoted Wen-li Wu, a scientist at the National Institute of Standards and Technology and an author of the new study, as saying.
“What we are talking about is a gel that you can squeeze as hard as you can, but it’s still slippery,” he said.
Hydrogel is produced from materials that are cheap and readily available and, it is held together by two polymers.
Out of the two polymers, the first is a charged solid that clings to a second, uncharged liquid polymer. If a crack develops in the solid polymer, the liquid polymer flows into the defect and essentially heals it.
The hydrogel is clear and as slippery as natural cartilage — an improvement over current materials used in artificial joints.
The hydrogel is also softer and more resistant to wear than current materials, say its makers.
“It will definitely absorb more shocks than current materials,” said Wu.
Since it is resistant to the build-up of proteins, the hydrogel could also be used for contact lenses and artificial corneas, among other applications.
“It’s an excellent material, very tough,” said Curt Frank, a scientist at Stanford University who works on hydrogels but was not involved in the NIST work.
“The hydrogel’s properties are very comparable to human tissues and have the potential to create a device that could replace human tissue,” he said.
The research was presented at the March meeting of the American Physical Society. (ANI)
- Biocompatible gel to replace damaged cartilage - Sep 06, 2012
- Scientists closer to making transplantable tissue in lab - Jan 13, 2011
- Novel hydrogel regenerates burnt skin tissues - Dec 14, 2011
- 'Lab on a chip' micro rheometer to improve viscosity tests dramatically - Sep 02, 2010
- New synthetic corneal implants to restore eyesight in blind patients - May 21, 2010
- Coming soon: Polymers that self-heal under UV light! - Apr 21, 2011
- Injectable gel to heal damaged hearts - Feb 22, 2012
- Corneal prosthesis, boon for those blinded in accidents - May 21, 2010
- New technology may free diabetics from daily injections - Aug 14, 2012
- Now, detect acute pancreatitis faster and cheaper with a biosensor! - Apr 26, 2011
- Unique coating kills 99 percent bugs - May 11, 2012
- New way to assemble artificial tissues developed - May 14, 2010
- Surprising behaviour of tiny 'artificial muscles' explained - May 02, 2010
- Soon, memory chips that could bend and twist - Jun 03, 2009
- Artificial cells to trap deadly viruses - Mar 03, 2011
Tags: artificial joints, cartilage, contact lenses, corneas, crack, current materials, discovery news, gelatin, human tissue, human tissues, hydrogel, li wu, liquid polymer, national institute of standards, national institute of standards and technology, polymers, proteins, scientist, shocks, stanford university