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A peptide hydrogel for use in vascular anastomosis

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Surgery specialists from Johns Hopkins University, in collaboration with researchers at the National Cancer Institute (NCI), developed peptide hydrogel compositions and methods to suture blood vessels during microsurgery. The hydrogels particularly benefit surgeons in whole tissue transplant procedures. The NCI seeks co-development research collaborations for further development of this technology.
NIH Reference Number
Product Type
  • Anastomosis, Peptide, Hydrogel, Surgery, Microsurgery, Schneider
Collaboration Opportunity
This invention is available for licensing and co-development.
Description of Technology

In collaboration with surgery specialists from Johns Hopkins University, researchers at the National Cancer Institute (NCI) developed novel hydrogel compositions and methods of using them in the microsurgical suturing of blood vessels, which is particularly beneficial for surgeons in whole tissue transplant procedures. The lead candidate electropositive hydrogels, called APC1, was demonstrated in anastomosis mice models to be well tolerated, biocompatible, and non-toxic. Synthetic preparation of APC1 is simple, and has been easy to use by surgeons to accomplish anastomosis in animal models.

Studies demonstrate that performing anastomosis with the aid of APC improves vessel patency and drastically decreases the time of the suturing. Additionally, in comparison studies, APC1 hydrogel treatment is associated with less inflammation and scar tissue formation. There are potential additional applications for the APC1 hydrogel in military operations, commercial veterinary applications, and scientific operations of laboratory animal models.

This technology is co-owned by and was co-developed with surgical specialists from Johns Hopkins University. Experiments are underway to test biocompatibility and toxicity in rhesus macaques and pigs.

Potential Commercial Applications
  • Vascular surgical aid
  • Utilized by the military in combat surgeries
  • Clinical research to suture laboratory animals
  • Commercial veterinary applications
Competitive Advantages
  • Greater stability in the presence of thiol nucleophiles
  • More facile and higher yielding synthetic preparation
  • Successfully utilized for in vivo surgical applications

Joel Schneider, Daniel Smith, Katelyn Nagy, Gerald Brandacher, Gabriel Brat, Yong Huang, Dedi Tong, Johanna Grahammer

Development Stage

Smith DJ, et al. A multiphase transitioning peptide hydrogel for suturing ultra-small vessels  [PMID 26524396]

Patent Status
  • U.S. Patent Filed: U.S. Patent Application Number , Filed 22 Jan 2016
Therapeutic Area
Wednesday, November 27, 2019