Apr 6, 2014
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This is derived from COLLAGEN, the chief constituent of CONNECTIVE TISSUE. It is a colourless, transparent substance which dissolves in boiling water, and on cooling sets into a jelly. Such a jelly is a pleasant addition to the invalid diet, especially when suitably flavoured, but it is of relatively little nutritive value as not more than one ounce can be taken in the day (i.e. the amount required to make one pint of jelly). Although it is a protein, it is lacking in several of the vital amino acids. The ordinary household ‘stock’ made from boiling bones contains gelatin. Mixed with about two and a half times its weight of glycerin, gelatin forms a soft substance used as the basis for many pastilles and suppositories. Partially degraded gelatin is sometimes given as a PLASMA-substitute transfusion for short-term emergency treatment for patients in SHOCK as a result of a severe blood or fluid loss from burns or SEPTICAEMIA.

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Medical Dictionary

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