Photochemical Coatings for the Prevention of Bacterial Colonization
Biomaterials are being used with increasing frequency for tissue substitution. Implantable, prosthetic devices are instrumental in the saving of patients' lives and enhancing the quality of life for many others. However, the greatest barrier to expanding the use of biomedical devices is the high probability of bacterial adherence and proliferation, causing very difficult and often untreatable medical-device centered infections. The difficulty in treating such infections results in great danger to the patient, and usually retrieval of the device with considerable pain and suffering. Clearly, development of processes that make biomedical devices resistant to bacterial adherence and colonization would have widespread application in the field of biomedical technology. A photochemical surface modification process is being investigated as a generic means of applying antimicrobial coatings to biomedical devices. The photochemical process results in covalent immobilization of coatings to all classes of medical device polymers. A discussion of the photochemical surface modification process and preliminary results demonstrating the success of photochemical coatings in formulating microbial-resistant surfaces are presented in this paper.
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