New ‘Smart’ Surgical Implant Coating Provides Early Failure Warning While Deterring Infection, ET HealthWorld

New 'Smart' Surgical Implant Coating Provides Early Failure Warning While Deterring Infection, ET HealthWorld

New Delhi: Researchers develop ‘smart’ coating for surgical applications Orthopedic implant It kills bacteria that cause infections, while monitoring device load and providing early warning of failure. Developed by researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, USA, the coating integrates a nanostructured antimicrobial surface inspired by the wings of dragonflies and cicadas with flexible sensors.

The study, published in Science Advances, showed that coatings prevented infection in live mice and mapped distortions in various implants and commercial implants applied to sheep spines to warn of failed healing. found.

“This is a combination of bio-inspired nanomaterials design and flexible electronics to combat complex long-term biomedical problems,” said study leader Professor Ching Cao of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. said.

Infection and device failure are both big problems. Orthopedic implantEach disease affects up to 10 percent of patients, Cao said.

Several approaches have been tried to combat the infection, he said, but all have serious limitations.

Biofilms can still form on water-repellent surfaces, and antibiotic- and drug-laden coatings can wear off in months, with toxic effects on surrounding tissues. It has little effect on drug-resistant bacteria. bacterial pathogenaccording to researchers.

The research team created a thin foil patterned with nanoscale pillars similar to those found on insect wings. When a bacterial cell tries to bind to the foil, the pillars puncture the cell wall, killing the cell.

“By using a mechanical approach to kill the bacteria, we can circumvent many of the problems of the chemical approach, while simultaneously applying a coating to the implant surface,” said co-author of the study, Professor Jie Lau. It gave us the flexibility we needed to

On the backside of the nanostructured foil that contacts the implant device, researchers have integrated a highly sensitive and flexible array. electronic sensor to monitor tension.

This allows physicians to monitor an individual patient’s healing progress, prescribe rehabilitation to reduce recovery time and minimize risk, and repair or replace equipment before it reaches a point of failure. The researchers said it could help.

The researchers then implanted the foil in live mice and watched for signs of infection, even if the bacteria got inside.

They also applied coatings to commercial spinal implants and monitored strain on sheep spinal implants under normal loading for device failure diagnosis. The coating performed both functions well.

The researchers next plan to develop wireless power and data communication interfaces for coatings, Cao said, an important step towards clinical applications.

They are also working to develop large-scale production of nanopillar-textured, bacteria-killing foils.

“There are many potential applications for these types of antimicrobial coatings, and ours uses a mechanical mechanism, so chemicals and heavy metal ions, as they are used commercially, It may also be used where it exists. antibacterial coating Now it will be harmful,” Cao added.

  • Published May 8, 2023 at 6:05 PM IST

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