Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Researchers at University of Kent investigate glass as a healing material

24.03.2005


The University of Kent is collaborating with research teams from the University of Warwick, Imperial College London and University College London (UCL) to develop novel forms of degradable glass for a variety of medical applications, including new bone growth.



The Kent team, led by Bob Newport, Professor of Materials Physics and Director of the Functional Materials Group, has successfully steered a joint bid to the Engineering & Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), which has released almost £1million in new research funding to the partnership.

The aim of the research is to investigate bioactive glasses and their possible use for a variety of medical applications. Bioactive glasses are significantly different to the glass used for the likes of TV screens or bottles; for instance, it is possible in some cases to produce a glass that will actually prompt the body to grow new bone. In all cases, the glass will dissolve safely away when in contact with body fluids such as blood plasma.


Commenting on the project, Bob Newport said: ‘The longer-term possibilities for tissue regeneration, for example, are really quite exciting – and even in the short-term these glasses offer the possibility of surgical implant materials with antibacterial properties and improved bio-compatibility. The challenge we have accepted at Kent is not only to synthesise the new materials, but also to begin to understand their make-up at the level of their constituent atoms.’

Conventionally, a glass is created by casting it in a furnace at high temperature, but there is a chemical technique to manufacture the glass at much lower temperatures from high-purity chemicals. The sol-gel process, as it is called, extends the region of glass forming, so that one can create certain chemical compositions that were previously impossible, and also create some unusual structures such as a high level of porosity. This opens up the possibility of building valuable attributes into the glass: and this is in fact the focus of the new funding. Key to the recently announced research support is the development by the Kent team of a means of using this route to make a series of bio-dissolvable glass materials able to prevent the formation of bacterial infection on surgical implants.

The newly-funded multidisciplinary partnership – involving the synthesis and advanced X-ray and neutron scattering expertise at Kent, a leading solid state Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) group at Warwick and the Division of Biomaterials and Tissue Engineering at the Eastman Dental Institute at UCL – will allow the scientists to examine the relationship between the structure and in vitro properties of this family of glasses.

In many ways this new project builds upon the long-standing Kent-Warwick research partnership in sol-gel materials, and complements their work on silicate-based bioactive glasses undertaken with the Tissue Engineering Group at Imperial College and aimed at understanding the material’s ability to promote bone regeneration.

| alfa
Further information:
http://www.kent.ac.uk

More articles from Physics and Astronomy:

nachricht Engineering team images tiny quasicrystals as they form
18.08.2017 | Cornell University

nachricht Astrophysicists explain the mysterious behavior of cosmic rays
18.08.2017 | Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology

All articles from Physics and Astronomy >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Fizzy soda water could be key to clean manufacture of flat wonder material: Graphene

Whether you call it effervescent, fizzy, or sparkling, carbonated water is making a comeback as a beverage. Aside from quenching thirst, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have discovered a new use for these "bubbly" concoctions that will have major impact on the manufacturer of the world's thinnest, flattest, and one most useful materials -- graphene.

As graphene's popularity grows as an advanced "wonder" material, the speed and quality at which it can be manufactured will be paramount. With that in mind,...

Im Focus: Exotic quantum states made from light: Physicists create optical “wells” for a super-photon

Physicists at the University of Bonn have managed to create optical hollows and more complex patterns into which the light of a Bose-Einstein condensate flows. The creation of such highly low-loss structures for light is a prerequisite for complex light circuits, such as for quantum information processing for a new generation of computers. The researchers are now presenting their results in the journal Nature Photonics.

Light particles (photons) occur as tiny, indivisible portions. Many thousands of these light portions can be merged to form a single super-photon if they are...

Im Focus: Circular RNA linked to brain function

For the first time, scientists have shown that circular RNA is linked to brain function. When a RNA molecule called Cdr1as was deleted from the genome of mice, the animals had problems filtering out unnecessary information – like patients suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders.

While hundreds of circular RNAs (circRNAs) are abundant in mammalian brains, one big question has remained unanswered: What are they actually good for? In the...

Im Focus: RAVAN CubeSat measures Earth's outgoing energy

An experimental small satellite has successfully collected and delivered data on a key measurement for predicting changes in Earth's climate.

The Radiometer Assessment using Vertically Aligned Nanotubes (RAVAN) CubeSat was launched into low-Earth orbit on Nov. 11, 2016, in order to test new...

Im Focus: Scientists shine new light on the “other high temperature superconductor”

A study led by scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg presents evidence of the coexistence of superconductivity and “charge-density-waves” in compounds of the poorly-studied family of bismuthates. This observation opens up new perspectives for a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of high-temperature superconductivity, a topic which is at the core of condensed matter research since more than 30 years. The paper by Nicoletti et al has been published in the PNAS.

Since the beginning of the 20th century, superconductivity had been observed in some metals at temperatures only a few degrees above the absolute zero (minus...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Call for Papers – ICNFT 2018, 5th International Conference on New Forming Technology

16.08.2017 | Event News

Sustainability is the business model of tomorrow

04.08.2017 | Event News

Clash of Realities 2017: Registration now open. International Conference at TH Köln

26.07.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

A Map of the Cell’s Power Station

18.08.2017 | Life Sciences

Engineering team images tiny quasicrystals as they form

18.08.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Researchers printed graphene-like materials with inkjet

18.08.2017 | Materials Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>