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Sunday, September 27, 2015
Glue, instead of needle and fil
Maria Pereira's surgical glue could completely revolutionize modern medicine
Wherever Maria Pereira goes these days—her office in Paris, a conference in Boston, or back home to Portugal—she carries around a thumb-size vial of glue. That vial, a good-luck charm, may contain the solution to one of surgery’s oldest problems: how to seal wounds and holes in the body without damaging the body itself.
The ancient Egyptians and Greeks faced the same dilemma, and coarse stitches from catgut and silk were their method of choice. The modern physician relies on a more refined technique of suturing wounds, yet it can still result in infection, irritation and scarring. Pereira, the head of research at Paris-based medical-device startup Gecko Biomedical, plans on changing that. “Innovation in science is the key to improving people’s lives,” says the 30-year-old, who grew up in the Portuguese city of Leiria and moved to Paris in October 2013 to join Gecko. The company closed its first round of funding at the end of that year, raising $11 million to advance work on surgical glues and patches for wound closure./.../