Antibacterial NO Releasing Nanofibers for Wound Healing Applications

Lead Research Organisation: University of Liverpool
Department Name: Engineering (Level 1)


One of the biggest challenges in healthcare today is the effective treatment of chronic wounds. A wound can become chronic (non-healing) when it gets stalled in one of the wound healing stages, such as prolonged inflammation. Prolonged inflammation stage can lead to stalling of the wound repair pathway and therefore making it highly susceptible to microbial infections. Indeed, bacterial infections are one of the predominant issues that can stall a wound, causing it to become chronic. Successful wound healing often depends on weeks or months of antibiotics, but this is problematic given the rise in multidrug-resistant bacteria. As such, alternatives to antibiotics are desperately needed to aid the healing of chronic, and even acutely infected wounds. Silver-based dressings are the current gold standard in antimicrobial wound care without the use of antibiotics and whist these dressings have made great strides in controlling microbial bioburden, overuse of silver is becoming problematic. The use of alternative antimicrobial such as antimicrobial peptides, essential oils and nitric oxide are promising alternatives to silver based dressings.

Electrospinning has developed significant traction for the manufacture of advanced dressings. These nanofibrous membranes can be fabricated with a variety of polymers to have key features such as high surface area, porous structures, and gas permeation that make them ideal for wound-healing applications. The incorporation of antimicrobial agents or therapeutics into these membranes and the ability to spin the membranes into any shape and size means that these materials can potentially be used for personalized bandages for virtually any wound. The structure of electrospun membranes can also promote the absorption of wound exudate, which can decrease the risk of wound infections. The aim of this studentship is to develop a multifunctional wound dressings/bandages capable of preventing wound infections that can also actively aid in wound repair.


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Studentship Projects

Project Reference Relationship Related To Start End Student Name
EP/T517975/1 30/09/2020 29/09/2025
2640773 Studentship EP/T517975/1 05/01/2022 03/07/2025 Cadhan O'Garra