Electrospun nanofibers for effective treatment of skin burns

The latest study in the journal Pharmaceutical focuses on electrospun nanofibers which contain natural biocompatible compounds that ensure their effectiveness for the treatment of burned human skin.

To study: Electrospun fibers loaded with natural bioactive compounds as a biomedical system for the treatment of skin burns. Image Credit: Bhakpong / Shutterstock.com

Electrospun nanofibers are gaining popularity in research because bioactive compounds can be easily deposited into nanocomposites, which improves burst regulation and pharmaceutical durability.

Importance of electrospun fibers

Burns continue to be a serious public health problem around the world. Heat (flame or scorching), cold, chemicals, radioactivity or abrasion can all cause burns.

Electrospinning is a popular and new encapsulation process. It is a simple and adaptable method for making bioactive fibers. These fibers have diameters ranging from a few nanometers to a few micrometers, with adjustable permeability, a high interface region, and a morphology that improves metabolic processes, skin rehabilitation and hemostasis, as well as prevention of spread. infection and characteristics that allow possible applications in biochemistry. regeneration and drug delivery mechanisms.

Limits of electrospinning

Electrospinning has major advantages over other methods of treating injuries and burns currently in use. Despite these obvious advantages, electrospinning can have some drawbacks or operational limitations, such as limited cell penetration and insufficient mechanical durability for higher load implementations. The bioactive materials used also have certain limitations. Some of the bioactive molecules are chemically reactive, insoluble, prone to oxidative degradation, or have low bioavailability.

Categories of electrospun fibers

Many aspects influence the electrospinning method, including experimental parameters, characteristics of the solution and the test environment. Accordingly, various categories of such fibers are present for varying uses.

Types of electrospun fibers: (a) Easy; (b) to mix together; (vs) core-shell. Image Credit: Hermosilla, J et al., Pharmaceuticals

Single fibers are the most basic type made of a single material, allowing bioactive compounds to be injected into its network due to intrinsic properties. The second major category of blend type fibers. It is a homogeneous mixture of two or more bioactive materials which are then treated by electrospinning.

These fibers are different from composite fibers, which contain several distinct mixtures of solutions. Composite fibers are heterogeneous and at least two distinct phases can be observed. The third major category consists of core / shell fibers. It consists of a main solution encapsulated by a shell solution.

Natural materials used for electrospun fibers

Several natural materials are used for electrospun fibers. Among them, chitosan is essential. It offers beneficial qualities such as bioactivity, non-toxicity, high availability, ease of customization, high chemical stability, the ability to form coatings, gels and nanostructures, and affinity for metals, proteins and dyes.

Collagen is the main protein in the body of mammals, accounting for about 30% of the total amount. It is the main constituent of ECM and it is essential for improving the durability of body tissues as well as the physiological modulation of the cell surface; it is frequently used in biomedical and pharmacological applications.

Another major and famous material is gelatin. Due to its high biomedical compatibility, its ease of biodegradability and its low allergenicity, this polymer is frequently used in activities linked to the food, medical and cosmetic industry sectors. Keratin is another substance used for drug delivery systems.

Importance of synthetic materials in electrospun fibers

The main synthetic material is polyethylene glycol (PEG). PEGs, through steric stabilization, reduce the propensity of nanoparticles to agglomerate, resulting in compositions with improved durability during storage and administration.

Polylactic acid is also a major synthetic substance used for this purpose. Although properties such as high stiffness and wettability limit its application in some fields, it is frequently used in biotechnology for its bioactivity and as a therapeutic agent. Apart from these, several other polymers are also widely used in the electrospun fiber industry.

Natural bioactive compounds in electrospun fibers

These naturally extracted oils, etc. have found their place in the electrospun fiber industry. Olive oil is an essential natural bioactive substance. It has a high concentration of essential vitamins, diene fatty acids and other organic minerals.

Its nanofibers are antibacterial. Curcumin is a yellow pigment which is an active component in turmeric. Curcumin has antiviral, anti-inflammatory and anti-infectious activities; however, it is extremely unstable in vivo and has limited bioavailability. Several other substances and oils extracted are also useful in burn treatments, wound healing and antibacterial applications.

In short, the research has touched on the development of electrospun fibers and their active biomolecules and substances essential for their development. These fibers help in the treatment of chemical burns and / or disease management in the affected area and are the subject of extensive research.

The references

Hermosilla, J., Navarrete, EP & Acevedo, F., 2021. Electrospun fibers loaded with natural bioactive compounds as a biomedical system for the treatment of skin burns. A review. Pharmaceutical, 13 (12). 2054. Available at: https://www.mdpi.com/1999-4923/13/12/2054

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