27 April 2010
The Department of Bio logical Sciences and Bio Engineering of the Indian Institute of Technology–Kanpur has developed a polymer which when applied to a fresh wound stops the bleeding within five seconds, said researchers involved in the project. After conducting successful experiments of the NPS on animals in the institute’s laboratory, the IIT–K team is now looking forward for clinical test ing of the product.
After conducting successful experiments of the NPS on animals in the institute’s laboratory, the IIT–K team is now looking forward for clinical testing of the product. It would soon apply for getting a patenting on the product. “Such a polymer sponge, which could promote haemostasis (the process to prevent the flow of blood from an injured body part) has not been developed,”said Ashok Kumar Kaul, Associate Professor of Bio–Sciences and Bio–Engineering Department.
According to Kaul, the haemostasis creams and ointments currently available in the market provide only partial relief. “In fact, they are ineffective in controlling bleeding in major injuries,”he added.
The NPS is made from a substance called chitin –extracted from crab shells –at minus 20 degrees Celsius using “cryogelation technology”. In the process, the chitin is modified into another substance called chitosan. “Using dex tran and other polysaccharides, chitosan is developed into NPS. The sponge has several pores which have the capacity to absorb volume of blood to promote haemostasis,” said Kaul.
The biodegradable NPS is in form of a one millimetre thin sheet, whose size can vary according to requirement. Easy to carry in a First Aid Box, the NPS can withstand extreme weather conditions of India.
“Since it is extremely hot in summer and extremely cold in winters in India, we have designed the NPS in a manner last it would have a similar impact in all seasons,” he added.
“If required, we will look for collaboration with a foreign institute or a firm for further tests of NPS,” said Kaul.