Biocompatibility and applicability of silk nano-diamond films in wound healing

Author: Alex Matusica

Matusica, Alex, 2020 Biocompatibility and applicability of silk nano-diamond films in wound healing, Flinders University, College of Science and Engineering

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Wound healing is one of the most important and complex biological processes, with a currently unmet demand for clinical therapies to combat the prevalence of wound healing complications, specifically in patients with diabetes mellitus.(Brem and Tomic-Canic, 2007) Biomaterial scaffolds are a promising avenue for effective wound healing therapies by promoting cell proliferation and vascularisation through integration with the body’s own tissue.(Vepari and Kaplan, 2007) The degradability and biocompatibility of silk firoin (SF) makes it a suitable biomaterial for a variety of medical applications, and its effects on accelerated wound healing are cited.(Zhou et al., 2019) A hybrid material of electro-spun silk fibroin impregnated with 100µm Nano-diamonds (NDSF) is investigated for its biocompatibility and wound healing promotion using a humanised mouse model. The characteristic nitrogen vacancy (NV-) centre in specific diamonds opens the door to biosensing through magnetic resonance techniques, and potential diagnostics of wound parameters such as temperature and pH with different methods.(Schrand et al., 2009) This investigation firstly analyses the wound healing promotion of SF in the Murine wound healing model to approximate the human healing equivalent, and then compares results to the NDSF hybrid. Wound closure was measured over a 10-day experiment in addition to doppler blood flow analysis at day 3, 7 and 10 of the experiment. The doppler measurements gave a quantifiable indication of blood perfusion at surface capillaries and vasculature to correlate with influx of cells at the wound milieu. Further histology was used to analyse the wound cross sections for the level of inflammatory infiltrate (granulation zone) as a further indicator of biocompatibility. The results showed that in general the SF scaffold improved the rate of wound healing over the 10-day experiment as compared to control, and the NDSF hybrid did not exhibit the same effect compared to control. Blood perfusion at the wound site exhibited no significant correlation between the presence of treatment vs control. Area calculations of granulation zones in scavenged wound tissue suggest no significant correlation between the presence of either material and the level of inflammatory infiltrate.

Keywords: Biocompatibility, Wound Healing

Subject: Engineering thesis

Thesis type: Masters
Completed: 2020
School: College of Science and Engineering
Supervisor: Dr. Youhong Tang