Temperature responsive antimicrobial gel with prolonged antimicrobial release

C. De Silva, J. T. Koberstein, S. Modak
Columbia University, New York, United States

Keywords: antimicrobial, wound-cream. infection, controlled release

Deep cuts and open wound sites are extremely prone to bacterial infections, especially in combat situations where proper cleaning practices may not always be available. The currently-accepted method to prevention of these infections is to use a bandage or antimicrobial ointment. However, it is widely known that, 1) antimicrobial bandage still contracts bacterial infections and rapidly diminishes its effectiveness when the severity of the wound increases, 2) antimicrobial ointments easily rub off and is extremely ineffective during periods physical activity; a perfect example is combat situations, 3) bandages and ointments lose their antimicrobial activity typically in less than 24 hours and therefore need to be replaced daily. To mitigate some of these drawbacks, we have designed a temperature responsive gel that is hydrophobic at room temperature and hydrophilic below 15C. When applied at room temperature, it forms an anti-rub-off film that will remain intact until rinsed with cold water. Importantly, the gel also contains a controlled release mechanism, which allows for slow release of antimicrobials within a span of 5-8 days. We have tested the gel against a range of microbes. The results confirm that the gel is significantly superior to currently marketed products showing broad-spectrum antimicrobial activity.