Biomimetic Antimicrobial Hydrogel Nanocomposite for Next Generation Wound Management Materials

S.J. Rinehart, A. Mlynarski, S.J. Brain, J. Rago, W. Chura, J.J. Keleher
Lewis University, US

Keywords: hydrogel, nanocomposite, antimicrobial


Wound healing poses a formidable challenge especially in cases of severe burn injuries and battlefield trauma. The treatment of such wounds and the promotion of healing is improved when the wound management materials are bacteriostatic, anti-viral, fungistatic, non-toxic, highly absorbent, non-allergic, breathable, hemostatic, biocompatible, and a scaffold for cell growth, while providing mechanical stability. While there have been significant advances in the past decade with respect to the development of novel wound management materials, there are several challenges associated with current technologies that include, inefficient adhesion to wound surfaces, low uptake wound secretions, and the inability to efficiently store/release antimicrobial drugs. This work explores the development of a nanocomposite wound management material that incorporates biomimetic polymers as the core building block coupled with antimicrobial nanoparticles, which also aid in the overall functionality and structural rigidity. More specifically, TiO2 nanoparticles have been incorporated into a chitosan/polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) hydrogel matrix using an aqueous synthesis route coupled with a freeze-dry dehydration process followed by the photo-reduction of Ag onto the dispersed nanoparticles.