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Open AccessReview

Biomaterials in Gastroenterology: A Critical Overview

by Adrian Goldis 1,*, Ramona Goldis 2 and Traian V. Chirila 3,4,5,6,7,8
Faculty of Medicine, Victor Babes University of Medicine and Pharmacy, 300041 Timisoara, Romania
Algomed Policlinic, 300002 Timisoara, Romania
Queensland Eye Institute, South Brisbane, QL 4101, Australia
Science & Engineering Faculty, Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane, QL 4000, Australia
Faculty of Medicine, University of Queensland, Herston, QL 4029, Australia
Australian Institute for Bioengineering and Nanotechnology, University of Queensland, St Lucia, 4072 QL, Australia
Faculty of Science, University of Western Australia, Crawley, WA 6009, Australia
University of Medicine, Pharmacy, Sciences and Technology, 540139 Targu Mures, Romania
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Medicina 2019, 55(11), 734;
Received: 26 September 2019 / Revised: 30 October 2019 / Accepted: 8 November 2019 / Published: 12 November 2019
In spite of the large diversity of diagnostic and interventional devices associated with gastrointestinal endoscopic procedures, there is little information on the impact of the biomaterials (metals, polymers) contained in these devices upon body tissues and, indirectly, upon the treatment outcomes. Other biomaterials for gastroenterology, such as adhesives and certain hemostatic agents, have been investigated to a greater extent, but the information is fragmentary. Much of this situation is due to the paucity of details disclosed by the manufacturers of the devices. Moreover, for most of the applications in the gastrointestinal (GI) tract, there are no studies available on the biocompatibility of the device materials when in intimate contact with mucosae and other components of the GI tract. We have summarized the current situation with a focus on aspects of biomaterials and biocompatibility related to the device materials and other agents, with an emphasis on the GI endoscopic procedures. Procedures and devices used for the control of bleeding, for polypectomy, in bariatrics, and for stenting are discussed, particularly dwelling upon the biomaterial-related features of each application. There are indications that research is progressing steadily in this field, and the establishment of the subdiscipline of “gastroenterologic biomaterials” is not merely a remote projection. Upon the completion of this article, the gastroenterologist should be able to understand the nature of biomaterials and to achieve a suitable and beneficial perception of their significance in gastroenterology. Likewise, the biomaterialist should become aware of the specific tasks that the biomaterials must fulfil when placed within the GI tract, and regard such applications as both a challenge and an incentive for progressing the research in this field. View Full-Text
Keywords: biomaterials; biocompatibility; gastrointestinal tract; endoscopic devices; hemostasis; surgical adhesives; stents; bariatric devices biomaterials; biocompatibility; gastrointestinal tract; endoscopic devices; hemostasis; surgical adhesives; stents; bariatric devices
MDPI and ACS Style

Goldis, A.; Goldis, R.; Chirila, T.V. Biomaterials in Gastroenterology: A Critical Overview. Medicina 2019, 55, 734.

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