Purpose: To ascertain if the polymerization reaction also contributes additionally to the antibacterial effects of two commonly used cyanoacrylate tissue adhesives.
Materials and methods: Fresh liquid ethyl-cyanoacrylate (EC) and N-butyl-cyanoacrylate (BC) adhesives were applied onto 6-mm sterile filter paper discs. In the first group, the adhesive-soaked discs were immediately placed onto confluent monolayer cultures of bacteria, allowing the polymerization reaction to proceed while in culture. In the second group, the adhesive-soaked disc was allowed to first polymerize prior to being placed onto the bacterial cultures. Four types of bacteria were studied: Staphylococcus aureus, Streptococcus pneumoniae, Escherichia coli, and Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Immediately after the discs were applied, the cultures were incubated at 35 degrees C for 24 h. Bacterial inhibitory halos were measured in the cultures at the end of the incubation period.
Results: For EC, exposure of the bacteria to the cyanoacrylate polymerization reaction increased the bacterial inhibitory halos in Streptococcus pneumonia, Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli. For BC, it increased the bacterial inhibitory halos in Staphylococcus aureus and Streptococcus pneumoniae. No inhibitory halos were observed in Pseudomonas aeruginosa. The bactericidal effect was higher in actively polymerizing EC, compared to previously polymerized EC in Staphylococcus aureus, Streptococcus pneumoniae, and Escherichia coli; however, no such differences were observed for BC.
Conclusions: The polymerization reaction may also be an important factor in the antibacterial properties of EC and BC.