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Inkjet printed drug-releasing polyelectrolyte multilayers for wound dressings

Department of Chemical Engineering, Worcester Polytechnic Institute, 100 Institute Road, Worcester, Massachusetts 01609, USA

Topical Section: Biological and biomimetic materials

Inkjet printing was used as a novel processing method for the preparation of polyelectrolyte multilayers. Conformal, consistent coatings were formed on a cotton substrate. As a demonstration of a potential application of this processing method, polyelectrolyte multilayers were assembled on cotton for wound dressing. When loaded with gentamicin, these coatings demonstrated burst release of 50% of the loaded gentamicin over the first five hours, followed by consistent release of 0.15 µg/(cm2-h) for at least four days. Significant antimicrobial activity of the gentamicin-releasing polyelectrolyte multilayer-coated cotton was observed, with a zone of inhibition of 1.575 ± 0.03 cm. This result is comparable to the zone of inhibition for cotton soaked in gentamicin (1.75 ± 0.04 cm), indicating that the inkjet printing processing method does not degrade gentamicin. Inkjet printing shows promise as a low cost, versatile option for polyelectrolyte multilayer fabrication. Additionally, as a scalable process, inkjet printed samples exhibited consistent antibacterial function for over three months after preparation.
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