Shrimp Shells and Turmeric Spice – A Recipe for Potentially Life Saving Blood Coagulation Patch

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In India, Dr. Subhasmita Swain at SOA University developed a biomedical patch that can coagulate blood flow in patients. Her cousin died due to excessive blood loss after an accident, leading this researcher to find a way to take advantage of chitosan and turmeric powder. Chitosan is an extract from shrimp and crab shells which we’ve covered before when researchers in Portugal and Boston were testing its use in bone grafting and medical device implants. Turmeric, something you may have in your spice cabinet, is known for its antibacterial and antibiotic properties.

Swain found that turmeric works effectively with chitosan which is a strong but biodegradable polymer to form the biomaterial patch that aids patient blood coagulation within two minutes, resulting in less blood loss. Considering that injury and related blood loss is estimated to be the third leading cause of death in India by 2020 from the World Health Organization, this patch could save many lives.