Novel high efficient coatings for anti-microbial surgical sutures using chlorhexidine in fatty acid slow-release carrier systems

Andreas Obermeier, Jochen Schneider, Steffen Wehner, Florian Dominik Matl, Matthias Schieker, Rüdiger Von Eisenhart-Rothe, Axel Stemberger, Rainer Burgkart

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

79 Scopus citations

Abstract

Sutures can cause challenging surgical site infections, due to capillary effects resulting in bacteria permeating wounds. Antimicrobial sutures may avoid these complications by inhibiting bacterial pathogens. Recently, first triclosan-resistances were reported and therefore alternative substances are becoming clinically relevant. As triclosan alternative chlorhexidine, the "gold standard" in oral antiseptics was used. The aim of the study was to optimize novel slow release chlorhexidine coatings based on fatty acids in surgical sutures, to reach a high anti-microbial efficacy and simultaneously high biocompatibility. Sutures were coated with chlorhexidine laurate and chlorhexidine palmitate solutions leading to 11, 22 or 33 μg/cm drug concentration per length. Drug release profiles were determined in aqueous elutions. Antibacterial efficacy against Staphylococcus aureus was assessed in agar diffusion tests. Biocompatibility was evaluated via established cytotoxicity assay (WST-1). A commercially triclosan-containing suture (Vicryl Plus), was used as anti-microbial reference. All coated sutures fulfilled European Pharmacopoeia required tensile strength and proved continuous slow drug release over 96 hours without complete wash out of the coated drug. High anti-microbial efficacy for up to 5 days was observed. Regarding biocompatibility, sutures using 11 μg/cm drug content displayed acceptable cytotoxic levels according to ISO 10993-5. The highest potential for human application were shown by the 11 μg/cm chlorhexidine coated sutures with palmitic acid. These novel coated sutures might be alternatives to already established anti-microbial sutures such as Vicryl Plus in case of triclosan-resistance. Chlorhexidine is already an established oral antiseptic, safety and efficacy should be proven for clinical applications in anti-microbial sutures.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere101426
JournalPLoS ONE
Volume9
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Jul 2014
Externally publishedYes

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