Gallium-Loaded Dissolvable icrofilm Constructs that Provide Sustained Release of Ga3+ for anagement of Biofilms

aggie Herron, ichael J. Schurr, Christopher J Murphy, Jonathan F. McAnulty, Charles J. Czuprynski, Nicholas L. Abbott

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


The persistence of bacterial biofilms in chronic wounds delays wound healing. Although Ga3+ can inhibit or kill biofilms, precipitation as Ga(H)3 has prevented its use as a topical wound treatment. The design of a microfilm construct comprising a polyelectrolyte film that releases noncytotoxic concentrations of Ga3+ over 20 d and a dissolvable micrometer-thick film of polyvinylalcohol that enables facile transfer onto biomedically important surfaces is reported. By using infrared spectroscopy, it is shown that the density of free carboxylate/carboxylic acid and amine groups within the polyelectrolyte film regulates the capacity of the construct to be loaded with Ga3+ and that the density of covalent cross-links introduced into the polyelectrolyte film (amide-bonds) controls the release rate of Ga3+. Following transfer onto the wound-contact surface of a biologic wound dressing, an optimized construct is demonstrated to release ≈0.7 μg cm-2 d-1 of Ga3+ over 3 weeks, thus continuously replacing Ga3+ lost to precipitation. The optimized construct inhibits formation of P. aeruginosa (two strains; ATCC 27853 and PA01) biofilms for up to 4 d and causes pre-existing biofilms to disperse. verall, this study provides designs of polymeric constructs that permit facile modification of the wound-contacting surfaces of dressings and biomaterials to manage biofilms.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2849-2859
Number of pages11
JournalAdvanced healthcare materials
Issue number18
StatePublished - Dec 30 2015


  • Biofilms
  • Gallium nitrate
  • icrofilms
  • Polymers
  • Wound dressing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Biomaterials
  • Pharmaceutical Science


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