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An adhesive technology helps to bond human tissue in wet or moist conditions. The chemistry is based on the environmentally-friendly adhesive qualities of mussels and other shellfish.

Jonathan Wilker, Purdue University professor of chemistry and materials engineering, studies materials created by shellfish that allow them to stick to one another and other surfaces. The adhesive created by Wilker mimics the material and could be developed by industry partners for applications in sectors including biomedical, cosmetics, construction, and manufacturing.

The synthetic mimic approach can also be tailored for specific bonding situations and applications.

Much of the chemistry involved in the animals' adhesive is protein-based. The Purdue researchers substituted simple polymers from the proteins, while maintaining other aspects of the adhesive chemistry.

Unlike conventional adhesives made from petroleum feedstocks, Wilker's technology can be developed from renewable resources.

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