Researchers developed a wound dressing specifically for children with burn injuries, made from a hydrogel containing nanoparticles of silver to treat infections in the wounds.
Silver kills bacteria with great efficiency, yet it can also be toxic to people in huge amount. However, a newly developed wound dressing by a team of scientists from the University of South Australia made from a topically applied hydrogel that comprises of silver nanoparticles, releases the silver payload only when there is an infection. With silver nanoparticles, the hydrogel also contains other proprietary ingredients that are sensitive to pH and temperature changes.
The new silver nanoparticle hydrogel-coated dressing delivers ultra-small silver nanoparticles on demand. When an infection changes the pH and temperature of the wound, the nanoparticles are released in the tissue. These nanoparticles then start to kill the harmful bacteria, as well as reduce the inflammation and boost tissue regeneration. Wound care products using silver can stop the bacterial growth, however they can also become toxic when they deliver excessive amount of silver. According to the scientists, this new treatment uses antibacterial properties of silver, yet prevents over exposure to it as it activates only when there is infection present in the wound.
As sepsis and wound infection are common problems in burn injuries in children, the new treatment would deliver silver particles on demand and will regulate inflammation as well as promote the tissue rejuvenation. It makes the treatment more effective and safer for children. This kind of efforts would allow the use of smart materials providing benefits to clinicians and patients. As of now, the commencement of clinical trials are not revealed and the commercial production is yet to be declared.