A novel composite coating and its assessment for biomedical applications

A new study describes the synthesis and characterisation of an iron oxide-hydroxyapatite-chitosan composite coating and its biological assessment for biomedical applications.

Medical staff in the operating theatre.
Biofilms on surfaces causes persistent infections and is an issue of considerable concern to healthcare providers. Image source: sasint - Pixabay (symbol image). 

Hydroxyapatite coatings are widely employed to enhance the osseointegration ability and bioactivity of biodegradable magnesium alloys as biodegradable implants. To further enhance the efficiency of hydroxyapatite-coated magnesium alloys, iron oxide particles were now used along with hydroxyapatite to produce the antimicrobial and bioactive coating via electrophoretic deposition.

The coatings were integrated in a matrix of chitosan. The experiments were carried out with different iron oxide particle concentrations i.e., 1, 3 and 5 (wt. %)), respectively. The antimicrobial property was investigated in Escherichia coli and Staphylococcus aureus strains, which confirmed that the micro-organisms development was suppressed by the significant rise of iron oxide particles.

Material for biomedical implant applications

Evaluation of bioactivity behavior was carried out in phosphate buffer saline for 7 days, and the composite coatings were found to enhance the apatite mineralization, as affirmed by SEM-EDX analysis. The assessment of hemocompatibility showed that the hemolysis ratio was less than 5 %, which confirms that the coatings were blood compatible in nature.

According to the scientists, the outcomes showed that hydroxyapatite-iron oxide-chitosan composite coating may be extensively utilised as an appropriate material for biomedical implant applications.

The study has been published in Progress in Organic Coatings, Volume 150, January 2021.

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