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New Wound Healing Opportunities
The classic plaster could soon be used up in wound care. A German research team recently developed a biological plaster made of protein that works like the body's own scab. The protein scaffold can even be made from the users' own blood, thus accelerating wound healing.
A team from the University of Bremen succeeded in mimicking the natural process of wound care. They developed a three-dimensional protein structure that works on the same principle as scab. According to the researchers, this scaffold can be made from the blood of humans, so that everyone could have their own organic patch, which is optimally accepted by the body. The study results were recently published on the website of the "International Society for Biofabrication".
Inspired by the body's own healing
Sometimes it happens faster than you think: a wrong cut, a fall or a scratch and a bleeding wound occurs. In the case of small injuries, the body regulates this automatically. The proteins contained in the blood plasma are converted and a crust is created as a wound closure, which is generally referred to as bark or scab. The Bremen research team took advantage of this natural process to produce a biological plaster that mimicked this effect.
Our blood forms a tissue of proteins for wound healing
The Bremen-based research group explains that the protein fibrinogen contained in the blood plasma is converted into fibrin in more detail. This creates a natural tissue made of nanofibers for wound closure and to support healing - the scab. The team headed by Professor Dorothea Brüggemann and doctoral student Karsten Stapelfeldt recently managed to create such a biological fibrinogen network in the laboratory. The researchers see this discovery as a new future for wound care.
The blood bandage
"Usually, wounds are helped with plasters and compresses, which are themselves tissue - but a synthetic one," says Professor Brüggemann in a press release on the study results. The new process enables biological wound dressings that can even be formed from a person's own blood. In the future, everyone could have their own biological patch that is ideally tailored to their own body.
A world first
"We have succeeded in producing a layer of the natural fibrinogen scaffold that is several micrometers thick, which is something that can actually be handled," adds Karsten Stapelfeldt. This is the basis for a natural wound dressing. "To put it bluntly: scab from a tube," says the scientist. This has never been done before.
Biopflaster still has to be thoroughly tested
"We will now test how cell cultures react to our fibrinogen networks, how they grow under which conditions and what the mechanical stability of the scaffolds is," Dorothea Brüggemann explains the next steps. "Perhaps someday, some blood will be taken from humans as an infant to have such fibrinogen plasters in stock for them," summarizes the researcher. The organic patch has already been submitted for European patent application. (vb)