In a new development at Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden, researchers have designed a new material to prevent infections in wounds. The specially designed hydrogel consists of material that works against all kinds of bacteria even antiobiotic-resistant ones.
They tested this new hydrogel on all types of bacteria and observed a very high incidence of effectiveness. It was even effective on bacteria that had become resistant to antiobiotics.
The main reason for the study was to explore new medical technology in hope of solutions to reduce the use of systemic antiobiotics. Bacteria that is resistant cause a hospital-acquired infection which can be life threatening.
This new hydrogel material consists of antimicrobial peptides. These are small natural proteins found in our immune systems. Working with these peptides they found out there is a low risk for bacteria to develop resistance against them. But these peptides break down quickly when they are exposed to bodily fluids such as blood. The researchers have found a way to overcome this problem through developing a nanostructured hydrogel. The peptides are permanently bound to it which creates a protective environment. The hydrogel is gentle on the skin and harmless to the body’s own cells.
The research has shown that the peptides break down slowly when they are bound to the hydrogel, thus creating a protective effect.
The results have been outstanding and the researchers are amazed at the surprisingly positive results. This is considered to be the first medical device successfully using antimicrobial peptides in a commercially and clinically viable manner. The uses of this new hydrogel are quite varied and create promising opportunities for clinical application.
This new material needs be to clinically studied further but the benefit to hospitals and patients has generated interest around the world.
To view the original scientific study click below:
Antimicrobial Peptide-Functionalized Mesoporous Hydrogels