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Biological Response Evaluation of Human Fetal Osteoblast Cells and Bacterial Cells on Fractal Silver Dendrites for Bone Tissue Engineering

Prosthetic joint replacement is the most widely used surgical approach to repair large bone defects, although it is often associated with prosthetic joint infection (PJI), caused by biofilm formation. To solve the PJI problem, various approaches have been proposed, including the coating of implantable devices with nanomaterials that exhibit antibacterial activity. Among these, silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) are the most used for biomedical applications, even though their use has been limited by their cytotoxicity. Therefore, several studies have been performed to evaluate the most appropriate AgNPs concentration, size, and shape to avoid cytotoxic effects. Great attention has been focused on Ag nanodendrites, due to their interesting chemical, optical, and biological properties. In this study, we evaluated the biological response of human fetal osteoblastic cells (hFOB) and P. aeruginosa and S. aureus bacteria on fractal silver dendrite substrates produced by silicon-based technology (Si_Ag). In vitro results indicated that hFOB cells cultured for 72 h on the Si_Ag surface display a good cytocompatibility. Investigations using both Gram-positive (S. aureus) and Gram-negative (P. aeruginosa) bacterial strains incubated on Si_Ag for 24 h show a significant decrease in pathogen viability, more evident for P. aeruginosa than for S. aureus. These findings taken together suggest that fractal silver dendrite could represent an eligible nanomaterial for the coating of implantable medical devices.

Publication date: 20/03/2023

Author: Domenico Franco

Reference: doi: 10.3390/nano13061107

MDPI (nanomaterials)


This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 870292.