In vitro cytotoxicity and antibacterial activity of silver-coated electrospun polycaprolactone/gelatine nanofibrous scaffolds

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The development of nano-sized scaffolds with antibacterial properties that mimic the architecture of tissue is one of the challenges in tissue engineering. In this study, polycaprolactone (PCL) and PCL/gelatine (Ge) (70:30) nanofibrous scaffolds were fabricated using a less toxic and common solvent, formic acid and an electrospinning technique. Nanofibrous scaffolds were coated with silver (Ag) in different concentrations of silver nitrate (AgNO3) aqueous solution (1.25, 2.5, 5, and 10 %) by using dipping method, drying and followed by ultraviolet (UV) photoreduction. The PCL/Ge (70:30) nanofibrous scaffold had an average fibre diameter of 155.60 ± 41.13 nm. Characterization showed that Ag was physically entrapped in both the PCL and PCL/Ge (70:30) nanofibrous scaffolds. Ag+ ions release study was performed and showed much lesser release amount than the maximum toxic concentration of Ag+ ions in human cells. Both scaffolds were non-toxic to cells and demonstrated antibacterial effects towards Gram-positive Bacillus cereus (B. cereus) and Gram-negative Escherichia coli (E. coli). The Ag/PCL/Ge (70:30) nanofibrous scaffold has potential for tissue engineering as it can protect wounds from bacterial infection and promote tissue regeneration.

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