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Scientists from NUST MISIS Create a Material for Implants Which Destroys up to 98% of Bacteria

MOSCOW, Oct. 14, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Scientists from NUST MISIS together with colleagues from Russia, the Czech Republic and the USA have developed a new material for implants which prevents the development of a bacterial infection after a surgery. Due to the platinum and iron nanoparticles in the composition, the material is able to kill up to 98% of bacteria within 12 hours after installation. An article about the development is published in the journal Applied Materials & Interfaces. 

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Bacterial infection occurs in 1-4% of cases after a planned surgery when installing implants, and in the cases of complex fractures, the probability of its occurrence reaches 30%. If an infection occurs, repeated surgery is often required.

In milder cases, antibiotic therapy is carried out, and the patient's body is subjected to tremendous stress. With this treatment, pathogenic bacteria very quickly develop resistance to antibiotics, moreover, many people have a severe allergy to medications.

Scientists at the National University of Science and Technology MISIS (NUST MISIS) and their colleagues have developed implantation material with metal nanoparticles, which effectively inhibits the growth and spread of pathogenic bacteria, without exerting an inhibitory effect on the cells of the immune system - lymphocytes.

"We implanted platinum and iron ions into a matrix, which is a biocompatible ceramic coating TiCaPCON (titanium-calcium-phosphorus-carbon-oxygen-nitrogen). As a result, metal nanoparticles several nanometers in size are formed on the coating surface. A potential difference of about 60 mV is formed between the nanoparticles and the ceramic matrix. When in contact with the material surface, the bacterial membrane can be destroyed," said Viktor Ponomarev, postgraduate student of the Department of Powder Metallurgy and Functional Coatings at NUST MISIS.

In addition, after sterilization of the implant with the coating under ultraviolet radiation, a large number of free radicals, which lead to the death of bacteria, are generated.

According to the authors of the study, during their experiments, the developed material destroyed 98% of bacteria in 8-12 hours, including Staphylococcus aureus and epidermal Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli, and Klebsiella pneumonia. Now scientists are considering testing the obtained samples inside a living organism (in vivo). Another promising application of the developed material may be the creation of filters for water purification.

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