Antibacterial analysis of a zinc-based glass polyalkenoate cement

J Biomater Appl. 2011 Sep;26(3):277-92. doi: 10.1177/0885328210364430. Epub 2010 Jun 21.


Infection following surgery can result in significant pain and morbidity for patients undergoing vertebroplasty/kyphoplasty, and often results in revision surgery. This study focuses on the development of Al-free glass polyalkenoate cements (GPCs) based on 0.04SrO-0.12CaO-0.36ZnO-0.48SiO( 2) glass, with the intent of optimizing their antibacterial efficacy by incorporating low-molecular-weight polyacrylic acids (PAA) and trisodium citrate (TSC), and evaluating the resultant GPCs against bacteria relevant to spinal infections, P. aeruginosa and E. coli. Ion-release profiles were determined for the GPC formulation containing E6 PAA (Cement A) and E7 PAA (Cement B), and Zn, Na, and Sr release was recorded over 1, 7, and 30 days. Inhibition was found in E. coli at each time period (0-30 days) and this generally decreased with exposure time in water. The largest GPC inhibition zones were produced by Cement A (6 mm); however the control material Simplex P + tobramycin produced much higher inhibition zones (11 mm). When testing the GPC against P. aeruginosa, inhibition was only present at the 0-day time period. Simplex P + tobramycin was found to produce inhibition at each time frame. Analysis of the agar from the inhibition zone of the E. coli test revealed that there is a significant change in Zn concentration as compared to a control agar specimen, which suggests that Zn release is responsible for the antibacterial effect of the GPCs.

MeSH terms

  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / chemistry
  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / pharmacology*
  • Bone Cements / chemistry
  • Bone Cements / pharmacology*
  • Escherichia coli / drug effects
  • Escherichia coli Infections / prevention & control
  • Glass Ionomer Cements / chemistry
  • Glass Ionomer Cements / pharmacology*
  • Humans
  • Kyphoplasty / adverse effects
  • Materials Testing
  • Methylmethacrylate / pharmacology
  • Pseudomonas Infections / prevention & control
  • Pseudomonas aeruginosa / drug effects
  • Spinal Diseases / prevention & control
  • Surgical Wound Infection / prevention & control
  • Tobramycin / pharmacology
  • Vertebroplasty / adverse effects
  • Zinc / pharmacology*


  • Anti-Bacterial Agents
  • Bone Cements
  • Glass Ionomer Cements
  • Methylmethacrylate
  • Zinc
  • Tobramycin