Micro and Nanobubbles for Wound Healing Applications
Complications with burns and wounds are a top ten as cause for premature mortality in the United States. Reduction of infection and improved healing times have been observed with proper wound cleaning (debridement) and breakdown of biofilms. The use of oxygen permeable dressings and the removal of wound-generated fluid (exudate) can also improve healing.
In this series of studies, we investigated the use of micro and nanobubbles (MNBs) as a method for wound treatment. We designed, constructed, and evaluated several candidate high concentration, low cost, and portable aqueous MNB generator systems and patient delivery devices. MNB delivery to porcine skin study models was shown to remove particulate from the wound, break down E. coli biofims, and substantially improve availability of tissue oxygen site. We investigated the use of MNBs of air and ozone to clean wounds and breakdown biofilms. Compared to untreated water, MNBs generated from air showed improved cleaning of fine particulate matter from the surfaces of porcine skin. Ozone and air MNBs applied to GFP expressing transgenic E. coli biofilms resulted in a significant decrease in biofilm levels. Ozone MNBs were demonstrated to substantially reduce reproductive viability of E. coli biofilms. Infusions of MNB water were shown to increase available oxygen. Cultures of transgenic, luciferase expressing E. coli were shown to substantially increase the duration bioluminescence in a low oxygen environment. A flexible, thin delivery system was designed, constructed, and evaluated for delivery of MNB solution directly to the wound site and exudate collection.