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12/17/2012

Gel to prevent heart attacks

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    A mussel-inspired gel could be used to reinforce weakened blood vessels.
    The gel is inspired by the mussel's fibrous adhesive called byssus, which the creature uses to keep itself attached to rocks. Made of a material similar to the amino acid found in the byssus, the gel can withstand the pressure of blood flow through arteries and could be used to strengthen vessel walls at risk of rupture.
    Preventing the rupture of blood vessel plaque is the most promising application of the gel. When a plaque deposit ruptures, the plaque can block blood flow to the heart or brain, triggering a heart attack or a stroke.
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Dr. Gibbson
 
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