The Irish Times reports that researchers from Advanced Materials and Bio-Engineering Research (AMBER) have developed a breakthrough biomaterial with graphene that regenerates tissue and eliminates infections.
The new material can help patients recover from heart attacks. It can also help those recovering from burns.
AMBER is a center funded by the Science Foundation Ireland. It is a platform that connects researchers in materials science with relevant industries.
The team at AMBER worked with scientists at Trinity College Dublin and Eberhard Karls University in Germany to make the “biohybrid” material.
The researchers outlined the structure of the material in a paper published in Advanced Materials. It is basically a combination of the protein collagen and graphene. It responds to electrical stimuli from the nerves, spinal cord, heart, brain, and muscles.
The material is a breakthrough in science as it can regenerate heart tissue in patients with heart problems. It may even be possible to transmit electrical signals across damaged tissue, resulting in functional restoration of the affected area.
The creators say the material may be able to improve the quality of life for heart attack survivors with scar tissue build-up. This build can decrease heart function, but the new material can bypass damaged regions to restore activity in the heart.
The material also stops bacteria from attaching to it, which can help in the development of antimicrobial devices.
In related news, scientists from Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) in Germany have developed a nanostructured surface that protects the wound from bacteria after a dental implantation.
Patrick Doll, a scientist at KIT’s Institute of Microstructure Technology (IMT), said the development of the system depends on two aspects: accurate structuring of the grooves to guide the cells better and finding the perfect nanosurface that doesn’t let bacteria attach to it.
News source: The Irish Times