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Int J Mol Sci. 2013 Mar 1;14(3):4817-40. doi: 10.3390/ijms14034817.

Active silver nanoparticles for wound healing.

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1
Department of Molecular Sciences and Nanosystems, University Ca' Foscari, Santa Marta, Dorsoduro 2137, 30123 Venice, Italy. barbara.zavan@unipd.it.

Abstract

In this preliminary study, the silver nanoparticle (Ag NP)-based dressing, Acticoat™ Flex 3, has been applied to a 3D fibroblast cell culture in vitro and to a real partial thickness burn patient. The in vitro results show that Ag NPs greatly reduce mitochondrial activity, while cellular staining techniques show that nuclear integrity is maintained, with no signs of cell death. For the first time, transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) analyses were carried out on skin biopsies taken from a single patient during treatment. The results show that Ag NPs are released as aggregates and are localized in the cytoplasm of fibroblasts. No signs of cell death were observed, and the nanoparticles had different distributions within the cells of the upper and lower dermis. Depth profiles of the Ag concentrations were determined along the skin biopsies. In the healed sample, most of the silver remained in the surface layers, whereas in the unhealed sample, the silver penetrated more deeply. The Ag concentrations in the cell cultures were also determined. Clinical observations and experimental data collected here are consistent with previously published articles and support the safety of Ag NP-based dressing in wound treatment.

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