Ciprofloxacin and Rifampin Dual Antibiotic-Loaded Biopolymer Chitosan Sponge for Bacterial Inhibition

Mil Med. 2018 Mar 1;183(suppl_1):433-444. doi: 10.1093/milmed/usx150.


Complex extremity wounds in Wounded Warriors can become contaminated with microbes, which may cause clinical outcomes resulting in amputation, morbidity, or even fatality. Local delivery of multiple or broad-spectrum antibiotics allows practicing clinicians treatment solutions that may inhibit biofilm formation. Propagation of vancomycin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus is also a growing concern. The development of vancomycin-resistant S. aureus has become a critical challenge in nosocomial infection prevention in the USA, but to date has seen little occurrence in osteomyelitis. As an alternative, locally delivered ciprofloxacin and rifampin were investigated in a preclinical model for the prevention of biofilm in complex extremity wounds with implanted fixation device. In vitro assays demonstrated ciprofloxacin and rifampin possess an additive effect against Gram-negative Pseudomonas aeruginosa and were actively eluted from a chitosan sponge based local delivery system. In an in vivo orthopedic hardware-associated polymicrobial model (S. aureus and Escherichia coli) the combination was able to achieve complete clearance of both bacterial strains. E. coli was detected in bone of untreated animals, but did not form biofilm on wires. Results reveal the clinical potential of antibiotic-loaded chitosan sponges to inhibit infection through tailored antibiotic selection at desired concentrations with efficacy towards biofilm inhibition.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Analysis of Variance
  • Animals
  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / administration & dosage
  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / pharmacology
  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / therapeutic use
  • Bacterial Infections / drug therapy
  • Bacterial Infections / prevention & control
  • Biopolymers / pharmacology*
  • Biopolymers / therapeutic use
  • Chitosan / pharmacology*
  • Chitosan / therapeutic use
  • Chromatography, High Pressure Liquid / methods
  • Ciprofloxacin / administration & dosage*
  • Ciprofloxacin / therapeutic use
  • Mice
  • Microbial Sensitivity Tests / methods
  • Rifampin / administration & dosage*
  • Rifampin / therapeutic use
  • Staphylococcus aureus / drug effects


  • Anti-Bacterial Agents
  • Biopolymers
  • Ciprofloxacin
  • Chitosan
  • Rifampin