Today’s Solutions: May 22, 2024

While it’s rather uncommon to come across tropical fruits like durian at your local grocery store, these unusual fruits are quite popular in Singapore, where scientists have recently figured out a way to turn discarded durian husks into sustainable and affordable antibacterial hydrogel bandages.

Although hydrogel bandages are nothing new, current versions are typically made of synthetic polymers featuring silver or copper ions with antibacterial properties. These polymers are most often non-biodegradable and come from non-renewable sources. Plus, the addition of the metal ions increases the cost of the bandages.

The new hydrogel version, developed by researchers at Nanyang Technological University, instead taps into the regional availability of durian husks, which typically end up thrown away or composted.

To create the bandage, the team extracted high-quality cellulose from the husks and then combined it with two other ingredients, namely glycerol (a byproduct of soap production) and natural yeast phenols (commonly used in baking bread). The end result is a soft germ-killing gel that resembles silicone in texture and can be cut into sheets.

When testing its performance, the scientists found that the material exhibited “good antimicrobial effects” for up to 48 hours. And in addition to being effective at killing germs, the durian-based hydrogel bandages are also more affordable than their conventional counterparts and are also biodegradable.

“By using waste products which are currently discarded in large quantities – durian husks and glycerol – we could turn waste into a valuable biomedical resource that can enhance the speedy recovery of wounds and reduce chances of infections,” said Prof. William Chen, who led the research team.

Solutions News Source Print this article
More of Today's Solutions

5 DIY and natural colon cleansing methods that really work! 

Within the field of health and wellness, colon cleansing has become a popular fad, frequently promoted as a way to improve gut health and ...

Read More

Novel material converts waste heat to electricity with record efficiency

Researchers at Northwestern University have come up with an extremely high-performing thermoelectric material that may be the most efficient yet at converting waste heat ...

Read More

Scientists improve cervical cancer prediction with new test

Great news! A more accurate test for cell changes that can lead to cervical cancer has just been developed by scientists. The groundbreaking test ...

Read More

Zimbabwe’s endangered black rhinos are finally making a comeback

Rhinoceros populations are beginning to recover in the species' native Zimbabwe, indicating that conservation efforts are bearing fruit, according to animal conservationists. According to ...

Read More