Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Spider Silk Used To Make Artificial Skin

Skin grafts are essential for treating burns & other injuries. This usually entails using skin from another part of the body. Scientists have long been trying to come up with an artificial alternative, The material needs to be accepted by the body, have skin cells embedded in it to replace the lost tissue & be able to degrade over time as the skin is replaced. It also needs to be strong enough to stand in for our own skin. Spider silk has been used historically to stem bleeding & heal wounds. A team from the Medical School Hanover in Germany have used silk from the golden silk orb-weaver spider to weave a mesh on which, given the proper nutrients, skin cells can flourish and be cultivated to reproduce both the outer epidermis & dermis.

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