Monday, November 9, 2015: 10:38 AM
251A (Salt Palace Convention Center)
Tissue adhesives used as sealants are of major importance in surgical procedures since leaks of air and lymphatic fluids impose severe health risks. The induced polymerization must be fast and hold tissues together or serve as a barrier to leakage. The adhesive must furthermore seal without any help from the patient and must persist long enough without further support for the wound to heal. We have developed a tissue adhesive based on spontaneous strain-promoted polymerization reaction of a tetraPEG-azide with a synthetic polypeptide bearing pendant dibenzocyclooctynes. When the two components are combined, they spontaneously polymerize under physiological conditions, leading to the formation of artificial plugs within tissues, without the use of a catalyst. The grafting units of the helical polypeptide are composed of ethylene glycol oligomers, mimicking the sheath properties of PEG in the immune system, without affecting the secondary structure of the polypeptide core. It was found that these triazole gels can be used as tissue adhesives, gluing porcine intestine pieces within a minute. Small variations in the azide/alkyne ratio can lead to tuning of the gel physical properties, while intentionally used stoichiometric imbalances can be used to incorporate other biomolecules and functionalities into the gel network.