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Can understanding potato starch aid in wound healing?
Not just a carbohydrate
Starch is one of the most important nutrients for humans, with almost 50% of our daily calories around the globe coming from starch and its derivatives. Besides being one of our main food sources, starch is used in many technical and biomedical applications. One such application comes in the form of Microporous Polysaccharide Hemospheres. These, are starch-based particles developed by the Swedish company Magle Chemoswed AB that can be used to accelerate wound healing. The particles are designed to selectively absorb water and low molecular weight compounds from the blood and concentrate clotting factors and platelets on the surface. In this way, they help accelerate the natural clotting cascade by promoting hemostasis, which can be achieved by applying these particles directly on the wound. During the water sorption process however, the hydration state of starch changes dramatically from practically dry to fully hydrated. Controlling hydration of the wound is crucial for a successful healing and this can be achieved by the fine-tuning of starch-water interactions. Thus, understanding hydration of starch is the key to further development of Magle Chemoswed AB technology
Hydration of starch particles
Hydration of starch microspheres was investigated with a multi-method approach. Small and wide-angle x-ray scattering experiments performed at MAX IV were combined with sorption calorimetry, gravimetrical swelling, rheology and differential scanning calorimetry experiments. X-ray scattering studies of hydration of starch-based materials and other carbohydrates offered unique understanding that can ultimately aid in the development of novel drug delivery systems. Results of the study are published in Carbohydrate Polymers http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.carbpol.2015.08.085
The project led by Professor Vitaly Kocherbitov at Biofilms Research Center for Biointerfaces, Malmö University, was done in collaboration with the Swedish company Magle AB (now Magle Chemoswed AB) and was financed by the Knowledge Foundation.