Immobilization-Enhanced Eradication of Bacterial Biofilms and in situ Antimicrobial Coating of Implant Material Surface - an in vitro Study

Int J Nanomedicine. 2019 Nov 29;14:9351-9360. doi: 10.2147/IJN.S219487. eCollection 2019.


Purpose: The aim of this study was to investigate a new method of in situ biofilm treatment for infected prostheses that remove bacterial biofilm and prevent reinfection through the use of an immobilizing agent in combination with the actions of biofilm-lysing enzymes and bactericidal antimicrobials.

Methods: We investigated the combination of self-immobilization chemistry of dopamine with a biofilm-lysing enzyme, α-amylase (Am), and an antimicrobial agent, silver nitrate (Ag), to treat model Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus) biofilms formed on titanium. The efficacy of biofilm removal and bacterial treatment was analyzed by crystal violet, colony-forming unit assays, confocal laser scanning microscopy, and scanning electron microscopy (SEM). To confirm the in situ coating of the titanium surface with antimicrobial Ag as a strategy to prevent bacterial recolonization, SEM in secondary electron mode (SE), backscatter electron mode, (BSE) and energy-dispersive spectroscopy (EDX) were used. The antimicrobial activity of the coated surface was evaluated by optical density measurement and colony-forming unit assays.

Results: Polydopamine (PDA)-assisted treatment showed approximately a 2 log reduction in recoverable CFU and a 15% increase in biofilm removal efficacy compared to treatments that had only Am or Ag. More importantly, PDA-assisted treatment was found to immobilize Ag on the surface after the treatment, rendering them resistant to bacterial recolonization.

Conclusion: Our in vitro findings suggested that this PDA-assisted treatment and the surface immobilization-enhanced treatment concept could be promising in the development of advanced treatment for implant retention surgery for an infected prosthesis.

Keywords: antimicrobial; bacterial biofilm; coatings; implants; in situ treatment.

MeSH terms

  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / pharmacology*
  • Antigens, Bacterial / metabolism
  • Biofilms* / drug effects
  • Coated Materials, Biocompatible / pharmacology*
  • Immobilized Proteins / metabolism
  • Indoles / pharmacology
  • Microbial Viability / drug effects
  • Polymers / pharmacology
  • Prostheses and Implants / microbiology*
  • Staphylococcus aureus / drug effects
  • Staphylococcus aureus / physiology*
  • Staphylococcus aureus / ultrastructure
  • Surface Properties
  • Titanium / chemistry


  • Anti-Bacterial Agents
  • Antigens, Bacterial
  • Coated Materials, Biocompatible
  • Immobilized Proteins
  • Indoles
  • Polymers
  • polydopamine
  • Titanium