The Orlando Section of ACS and Student Chapters from Florida Tech and UCF Present:
“Antimicrobial Hydrogels for Wound Healing”
Dr. Olga Makhlynets
Associate Professor, Department of Chemistry
Tuesday, December 7th at 6:30 P.M.
Fungal and bacterial agents such as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), E. coli, P. aeruginosa, and Candida species are associated with infections that have become a frequent issue that plagues hospitals. One strategy that has emerged to prevent and treat such infections is the use of antimicrobial gels in the form of wound fillers, implant coating, and for drug delivery. The use of silver compounds in wound healing is very prevalent due to their antimicrobial properties, however high concentrations of silver are toxic to mammalian cells.
The Makhlynets research group has developed a peptide that incorporates an unnatural amino acid, 3’-pyridyl alanine (3’-PyA), into its sequence that binds to silver and releases it slowly over time to overcome the issue of toxicity. In the presence of Ag(I) ions the peptide assumes a beta-sheet secondary structure and self-assembles into a strong hydrogel characterized by rheology, circular dichroism, and transmission electron spectroscopy. This hydrogel displays high potency against infectious agents while being non-toxic to connective tissue found in the body.