This study investigates the use of gallium (Ga) based glass polyalkenoate cements (GPCs) as a possible alternative adhesive in sternal fixation, post sternotomy surgery. The glass series consists of a Control (CaO-ZnO-SiO2), and LGa-1 and LGa-2 which contain Ga at the expense of zinc (Zn) in 0.08 mol% increments. The additions of Ga resulted in increased working time (75 s to 137 s) and setting time (113 to 254 s). Fourier Transform Infrared (FTIR) analysis indicated that this was a direct result of increased unreacted poly(acrylic acid) (PAA) and the reduction of crosslink formation during cement maturation. LGa samples (0.16 wt % Ga) resulted in an altered ion release profile, particularly for 30 days analysis, with maximum Ca2+, Zn2+, Si4+ and Ga3+ ions released into the distilled water. The additions of Ga resulted in increased roughness and decreased contact angles during cement maturation. The presence of Ga has a positive effect on the compressive strength of the samples with strengths increasing over 10 MPa at 7 days analysis compared to the 1 day results. The additions of Ga had relatively no effect on the flexural strength. Tensile testing of bovine sterna proved that the LGa samples (0.16 wt % Ga) are comparable to the Control samples.
The outstanding combination of high tensile strength and extensibility of spider silk is believed to contribute to the material's toughness. Thus, there is great interest in engineering silk for biomedical products such as suture or implants. Additionally, over the years, many studies have also sought to enhance the mechanical properties of spider silk for wider applicability, e.g., by irradiating the material using ultra-violet radiation. However, the limitations surrounding the use of ultra-violet radiation for enhancing the mechanical properties of spider silk are not well-understood. Here, we have analyzed the mechanical properties of spider silk at short ultra-violet irradiation duration. Specimens of spider silk were subjected to ultra-violet irradiation (254-nm wavelength, i.e. UVC) for 10, 20, and 30 min, respectively, followed by tensile test to rupture to determine the strength (maximum stress), extensibility (rupture strain), and toughness (strain energy density to rupture). Controls, i.e., specimens that did not received UVC, were also subjected to tensile test to rupture to determine the respective mechanical properties. One-way analysis of variance reveals that these properties decrease significantly (p < 0.05) with increasing irradiation duration. Among the three mechanical parameters, the strength of the spider silk degrades most rapidly; the extensibility of the spider silk degrades the slowest. Overall, these changes correspond to the observed surface modifications as well as the bond rupture between the peptide chains of the treated silk. Altogether, this simple but comprehensive study provides some key insights into the dependence of the mechanical properties on ultra-violet irradiation duration.
In the current practice, the clinical use of conventional skin substitutes such as autogenous skin grafts have shown several problems, mainly with respect to limited sources and donor site morbidity. In order to overcome these limitations, the use of smart synthetic biomaterials is tremendously diffusing as skin substitutes. Indeed, engineered skin grafts or analogues frequently play an important role in the treatment of chronic skin wounds, by supporting the regeneration of newly formed tissue, and at the same time preventing infections during the long-term treatment. In this context, natural proteins such as collagen-natively present in the skin tissue-embedded in synthetic polymers (i.e., PCL) allow the development of micro-structured matrices able to mimic the functions and to structure of the surrounding extracellular matrix. Moreover, the encapsulation of drugs, such as gentamicin sulfate, also improves the bioactivity of nanofibers, due to the efficient loading and a controlled drug release towards the site of interest. Herein, we have done a preliminary investigation on the capability of gentamicin sulfate, loaded into collagen-added nanofibers, for the controlled release in local infection treatments. Experimental studies have demonstrated that collagen added fibers can be efficaciously used to administrate gentamicin for 72 h without any toxic in vitro response, thus emerging as a valid candidate for the therapeutic treatment of infected wounds.
Wear and wear-induced debris is a significant factor in causing failure in implants. Reducing contact pressure by using a textured surface between the femoral head and acetabular cup is crucial to improving the implant's life. This study presented the effect of surface texturing as dimples on the wear evolution of total hip arthroplasty. It was implemented by developing finite element analysis from the prediction model without dimples and with bottom profile dimples of flat, drill, and ball types. Simulations were carried out by performing 3D physiological loading of the hip joint under normal walking conditions. A geometry update was initiated based on the patient's daily routine activities. Our results showed that the addition of dimples reduced contact pressure and wear. The bottom profile dimples of the ball type had the best ability to reduce wear relative to the other types, reducing cumulative linear wear by 24.3% and cumulative volumetric wear by 31% compared to no dimples. The findings demonstrated that surface texturing with appropriate dimple bottom geometry on a bearing surface is able to extend the lifetime of hip implants.
The prediction of bone remodeling behaviour is a challenging factor in encouraging the long-term stability of hip arthroplasties. The presence of femoral components modifies the biomechanical environment of the bone and alters the bone growth process. Issues of bone loss and gait instability on both limbs are associated with the remodeling process. In this study, finite element analysis with an adaptive bone remodeling algorithm was used to predict the changes in bone mineral density following total hip and resurfacing hip arthroplasty. A three-dimensional model of the pelvis-femur was constructed from computed tomography (CT-based) images of a 79-year-old female patient with hip osteoarthritis. The prosthesis stem of the total hip arthroplasty was modelled with a titanium alloy material, while the femoral head had alumina properties. Meanwhile, resurfacing of the hip implant was completed with a cobalt-chromium material. Contact between the components and bone was designed to be perfectly bonded at the interface. Results indicate that the bone mineral density was modified over five years on all models, including hip osteoarthritis. The changes of BMD were predicted as being high between year zero and year one, especially in the proximal region. Changes were observed to be minimal in the following years. The bone remodeling process was also predicted for the non-operated femur. However, the adaptation was lower compared to the operated limbs. The reduction in bone mineral density suggested the bone loss phenomenon after a few years.
The rise of antibiotic resistance has become a major threat to human health and it is spreading globally. It can cause common infectious diseases to be difficult to treat and leads to higher medical costs and increased mortality. Hence, multifunctional polymeric nanofibers with distinctive structures and unique physiochemical properties have emerged as a neo-tool to target biofilm and overcome deadly bacterial infections. This review emphasizes electrospun nanofibers' design criteria and properties that can be utilized to enhance their therapeutic activity for antimicrobial therapy. Also, we present recent progress in designing the surface functionalization of antimicrobial nanofibers with non-antibiotic agents for effective antibacterial therapy. Lastly, we discuss the future trends and remaining challenges for polymeric nanofibers.