Low Concentrations of Acetic Acid to Prevent and Treat Biofilms
Burn wounds are susceptible to infection due to loss of a normal skin barrier. Subsequent sepsis is the leading cause of death among patients with burn wounds. Researchers from the University of Birmingham and the National Institute for Health Research Surgical Reconstruction and Microbiology Research Centre demonstrated that topical application of acetic acid in low concentrations (0.16%-0.3%) can be used to prevent and treat biofilms in burn wounds. At a low but effective concentration, topical acetic acid is a cheap alternative antimicrobial agent without causing discomfort. Future studies from the research team will test plain dressings soaked with acetic acid against the more commonly used silver-based dressings.
The American Academy of Dermatology Released New Recommendations
The Academy identifies areas with the greatest potential for overuse/misuse and needs for quality improvement. They release the Choosing Wisely® list with the following recommendations:
· Don’t use systemic (oral or injected) corticosteroids as a long-term treatment for dermatitis.
· Don’t routinely use antibiotics to treat bilateral swelling and redness of the lower leg unless there is clear evidence of infection. Clinical presentations involving swelling and redness of both legs are most likely related to dermatitis, not cellulitis.
· Don’t routinely prescribe antibiotics for inflamed epidermal cysts. It is important to confirm infection before treating these cysts with antibiotics.
· Don’t prescribe oral antifungal therapy for suspected nail fungus without confirmation of a fungal infection.
· Don’t routinely use topical antibiotics on a surgical wound.
Dressing with Nanofibers of Cellulose Acetate to Promote Tissue Repair
A Research Team from Alexandria University Has Developed an Absorbent Wound dressing with nanofibers from cellulose acetate. Cellulose acetate is an inexpensive semisynthetic polymer used in everything from photographic film to coatings for eyeglasses. It is spun into fibers and incorporated silver nanoparticles to address bacterial burden. The scientists demonstrated that the use of this dressing could promote collagen production and help to recreate normal skin strength as the wound heals in diabetes mellitus.
Research Collaboration to Develop New Drug Based on Plasminogen
The biotech company Omnio, based in Swedish Umeå, launched a research collaboration with the Canadian pharmaceutical company ProMetic to develop a new drug for slow-healing chronic wounds. The collaboration includes funding for clinical studies of a drug based on the blood plasma protein plasminogen.
Stop Bleeding with a Nanofiber Hydrogel Infused with Snake Venom
Bleeding can be stopped in as little as 6 seconds by a hydrogel called SB50 that incorporates batroxobin, which is a venom produced by 2 species of pit viper found east of the Andes in South America. Batroxobin, also known as reptilase, has a similar function to thrombin in platelet aggregation and fibrin clot formation. It is a serine protease that acts on fibrinogen, making it an effective topical hemostatic agent. Unlike thrombin, batroxobin is not inhibited by heparin and other specific cofactors. For this reason, it has also been used as a diagnostic tool to determine blood-clotting time for patients who are receiving heparin therapy. Scientists from the Rice University have learned how to produce batroxobin from genetically modified bacteria and then combine it with their synthetic, self-assembling nanofibers that turns into a gel at the site of a wound.
MolecuLight: Diagnostic Medical Imaging Device for Wound Care
MolecuLight i:X is a novel, handheld fluorescence imaging device that provides real-time visualization of bacteria in chronic wounds. This device may allow clinicians to better analyze the bacterial condition of chronic wounds, especially for patients with an immunocompromised condition where the signs and symptoms of high bacterial loads or infection are not present. Their studies have shown the MolecuLight i:X can detect wound subsurface heavy bacterial load as well as subclinical local infection alerting clinicians to initiate targeted and precise treatment.