Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Design of New Biomaterials from lactic acid

30.11.2007
Researchers from the Universidad Rey Juan Carlos have developed new biocompatible polymeric materials that have many applications inside the medical surgery and the biodegradable materials fields.

Polymeric biomaterials derived from lactic acid have extensive uses in medical applications, especially in the context of biodegradable sutures. They are widely used in the architecture of cardiac tissue, as support for drugs, and biodegradable fixation devices for the repair of small broken bones such as the ones in the hands, joints and feet.

These orthopaedic implants are gradually metabolised and naturally assimilated by the body. Their mass is progressively transferred into the broken bone, helping the healing process and thereby eliminating the need for a second intervention.

These new materials are obtained through molecular catalysis, and require breaking the cyclic dimer of lactic acid “lactide” to obtain polylactic acid (PLA). The lactide is a renewable natural resource that occurs as a by-product of the fermentation of biomass with high starch content, such as maize, wheat, or sugar beet. As in every polymerisation process, a catalyst is required and in this case the active compound must be a metal.

... more about:
»Metal »PLA »acid »biodegradable »catalyst »lactic

Consequently, this catalytic process has been studied with different metals such as tin, yttrium, titanium, aluminium and other lanthanides. However, since on some occasions residues of the catalyst can be incorporated into the polymer, it is important to preserve the biocompatibility and zero toxicity of the PLA by insuring that the metallic catalyst used is biologically benign and does not have a negative impact on tissue. These medical uses have favoured the use of metals like magnesium, calcium or zinc, all of them common inside the human body.

On a different front, PLAs are being investigated as a possible raw material of many manufactured products, since they present similar and in some cases better properties than traditional polymers that are derived from the bioresistant poly (a-olefin), with the significant added benefit of biodegradation.

While their production costs were considered too high in the past, recent developments in the treatment and production combined with the contrasting ecological hazard represented by petroleum derived polymers have brought these types of biodegradable polymers to very competitive positions.

One of the most recent and relevant examples that confirm this growing expansion, is the joint endeavour by Cargill. Inc., and The Dow Chemical Co., who have recently announced the mass production of many tons of PLAs.

The scientific community shows a growing interest to find catalysts that are capable of producing such biomaterials with well defined microstructures, since this defines the mechanical properties, the biodegradability, and the overall usability of the material.

With this in mind, the research group from the URJC, formed by Dr Andrés Garcés and Carlos Alonso and coordinated by Dr Luis Fernando Sánchez-Barba, is working in collaboration with the UCLM to develop different families of catalysts based on magnesium and zinc and stabilised by ligands like heteroscorpionate of they type “NNN”, capable of polymerising the ε-caprolactone and the lactide in a controlled manner. These are extremely active initiators with a chemical formula of [M(R)(NNN)] (M = Mg, Zn) that achieve a productivity of 21.000 Kg of poly-ε- caprolactone (PLC) produced per mol of Mg each hour at room temperature.

Moreover, some of these initiators allow for a controlled growth of the PLA’s microstructure. This is linked to the influence that the heteroscorpionate exerts during the process of opening the cyclic dimmer, which in turn grants control over the future specifications and applications of the produced material such as a high molecular mass, crystallinity as well as high fusion temperature (165ºC), all of it generating a great interest from industry.

This study has been published in the latest editions of the Inorganic Chemistry & Organometallics magazine.

Gabinete de prensa | alfa
Further information:
http://pubs.acs.org/cgi-bin/abstract.cgi/orgnd7/2007/26/
http://pubs.acs.org/cgi-bin/abstract.cgi/inocaj/2007/46/i05/abs/ic062093c.html

Further reports about: Metal PLA acid biodegradable catalyst lactic

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Cryo-electron microscopy achieves unprecedented resolution using new computational methods
24.03.2017 | DOE/Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

nachricht How cheetahs stay fit and healthy
24.03.2017 | Forschungsverbund Berlin e.V.

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Giant Magnetic Fields in the Universe

Astronomers from Bonn and Tautenburg in Thuringia (Germany) used the 100-m radio telescope at Effelsberg to observe several galaxy clusters. At the edges of these large accumulations of dark matter, stellar systems (galaxies), hot gas, and charged particles, they found magnetic fields that are exceptionally ordered over distances of many million light years. This makes them the most extended magnetic fields in the universe known so far.

The results will be published on March 22 in the journal „Astronomy & Astrophysics“.

Galaxy clusters are the largest gravitationally bound structures in the universe. With a typical extent of about 10 million light years, i.e. 100 times the...

Im Focus: Tracing down linear ubiquitination

Researchers at the Goethe University Frankfurt, together with partners from the University of Tübingen in Germany and Queen Mary University as well as Francis Crick Institute from London (UK) have developed a novel technology to decipher the secret ubiquitin code.

Ubiquitin is a small protein that can be linked to other cellular proteins, thereby controlling and modulating their functions. The attachment occurs in many...

Im Focus: Perovskite edges can be tuned for optoelectronic performance

Layered 2D material improves efficiency for solar cells and LEDs

In the eternal search for next generation high-efficiency solar cells and LEDs, scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory and their partners are creating...

Im Focus: Polymer-coated silicon nanosheets as alternative to graphene: A perfect team for nanoelectronics

Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are less stable. Now researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have, for the first time ever, produced a composite material combining silicon nanosheets and a polymer that is both UV-resistant and easy to process. This brings the scientists a significant step closer to industrial applications like flexible displays and photosensors.

Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are...

Im Focus: Researchers Imitate Molecular Crowding in Cells

Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to simulate these confined natural conditions in artificial vesicles for the first time. As reported in the academic journal Small, the results are offering better insight into the development of nanoreactors and artificial organelles.

Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

International Land Use Symposium ILUS 2017: Call for Abstracts and Registration open

20.03.2017 | Event News

CONNECT 2017: International congress on connective tissue

14.03.2017 | Event News

ICTM Conference: Turbine Construction between Big Data and Additive Manufacturing

07.03.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Argon is not the 'dope' for metallic hydrogen

24.03.2017 | Materials Sciences

Astronomers find unexpected, dust-obscured star formation in distant galaxy

24.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Gravitational wave kicks monster black hole out of galactic core

24.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>