I figure it's safe to say that most of us have ended up getting stitches at some point in our lives. Not to imply that y'all are snitches -- stuff just happens, right? If you haven't gotten stitches, please ask your nearest friend who has made their living in a kitchen or on a construction site -- they probably have a story about getting stitches at some point. It's going to sound terrible, and it was definitely worse than it sounds, because getting stitches sucks. The hope for an adhesive solution that lets doctors close wounds without resorting to stitches, staples, or sutures is a lasting one, and researchers at the University of British Columbia appear to have made some headway toward that goal. In a study published today in the journal PNAS Early Edition, the UBC team reports promising findings that the adhesive that mussels use to stick to the rocky shores where they make their home could one day lead to medical glues to reattach and hold together severed blood vessels.
As you may be aware, geckos are really, really good at sticking to stuff. What's more, they do it naturally without any sort of traditionally sticky substance involved. You know, the kind of annoying sticky substances involved with most man-made things that are made (by men) to stick things to other things. Of course, there's a lot to be gained from harnessing the power of the gecko: Robots that can climb walls, removable wall and ceiling fixtures, and of course, non-sticky tape that can support the weight of a full grown man. With that last one in mind, a group of scientists from the University of Kiel, led by Stanislav Gorb, appear to be living the dream.