Current Affairs 2017 (July)

Scientists develop Bio-glue for wound healing

Scientists have developed a super strong, flexible Bio-glue for wound healing without causing toxicity. It has been inspired by an adhesive material (glue) secreted by slugs that sticks to biological tissues

Slugs naturally secrete a special kind of mucus (adhesive material) in its place when threatened, making it difficult for a predator to pry it off its surface.

Key Facts

The bio-glue is double-layered hydrogel consisting of an alginate-polyacrylamide matrix supporting an adhesive layer that has positively-charged polymers protruding from its surface. It bonds to biological tissues via three mechanisms – electrostatic attraction to covalent bonds between neighbouring atoms, negatively charged cell surfaces and physical interpenetration.

This bond makes the adhesive super strong. It is the combination of a very strong adhesive force and has ability to transfer and dissipate stress. It can bind to tissues with strength comparable to the body’s own resilient cartilage.

Applications: The bio-glue has numerous potential applications in the medical field, either as a patch that can be cut to desired sizes and applied to tissue surfaces or can be also used as an injectable solution for deeper injuries.

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Haryana government bans use of liquid nitrogen in food and drink

The Haryana food and drugs administration department has banned flushing/mixing of liquid nitrogen with any drink or food article. The ban was imposed under section 34 of the Food Safety and Standards Act (FSS), 2006.

The ban comes after a cocktail accident (due mixing of liquid nitrogen in cocktail) at Gurgaon pub in April 2016 that burnt a hole in a man’s stomach.

Under this ban, any eatery found using liquid nitrogen with any drink or food will be booked under section 34 (i) and (ii) of the FSS Act, 2006. The eatery may also face closure and/or a penalty.

Liquid nitrogen

Liquid nitrogen is a colourless liquid having a boiling point of -195.79 °C. It is used to instantly freeze food and drinks. It is used in bars to quickly freeze ingredients, chill glasses and provide a smoky effect to drinks and also in molecular gastronomy. It is also used to cool computers and in cryogenic medical procedures like removing cancerous tissues and warts by freezing them.

Harmful effects of liquid nitrogen

According to medical experts, any drink or food article whose preparation involves flushing/mixing of liquid nitrogen is harmful for humans. It releases a large volume of gas as it evaporates, which can burst the stomach if consumed in a sufficiently large quantity.

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