Nanotechnology creates a super-plaster for diabetes patients.
Individuals with diabetes mellitus are more susceptible to wounding and often suffer from botched wound healing. Today, scientists in Egypt have produced antibacterial nanofibres of cellulose acetate laden with silver that could be used in a new type of bandage to promote tissue repair. Published in the journal of International Journal of Nanoparticles, the scientists reveal details of the new materials and their properties.
The scientists (Thanaa Ibrahim Shalaby and colleagues, Nivan Mahmoud Fekry, Amal Sobhy El Sodfy, Amel Gaber El Sheredy and Maisa El Sayed Sayed Ahmed Moustafa) from Alexandria University have prepared nanofibres made from cellulose acetate, an economical and easily fabricated, semi-synthetic polymer which has been utilised in everything from photographic film to coatings for glasses and even cigarette filters.
Cellulose acetate can be spun into fibres and thus used to make an absorbent and safe wound dressing. Shalaby et al used various analytical techniques including scanning electron microscope (SEM) and Fourier-transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy to characterise their fibres in which they incorporated silver nanoparticles.
After identifying the material the team then successfully tested its antibacterial activity against different strains of bacteria that might infect an open wound. They then used the material as a bandage on skin wounds on mice with diabetes and determined how quickly the wound healed with and without the nano dressing.
The bandage absorbed fluids exuded by the wound, but also protected the wound from infectious agents while being permeable to air and moisture, the team reports. The use of this bandage also promoted collagen production as the wound heals, which helps to recreate normal skin strength and texture something that is lacking in unassisted wound healing in diabetes mellitus.
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