Control of infection and thrombosis in total artificial heart technology has been of great concern for the last five decades. Even for totally implantable total artificial hearts, infection control is necessary because patients still need percutaneous lines for collecting post-implant hemodynamic data. During the Phase I contract with NIH/NHLBI, ND Life and University of Pittsburgh developed a highly effective anti-infection coating system based on nanotechnology that can be easily applied to the treatment of drivelines for ventricular assist devices (VADs). A novel green processing technique has been explored to immobilize silver nanoparticles on Dacron in Phase I. Irreversibly immobilized silver nanoparticles on Dacron showed significant reduction of bacterial challenges in Phase I. In the Phase II, ND Life and University of Pittsburgh will optimize the nanotechnology-based antimicrobial coating systems by a novel green processing technique through in vitro and in vivo studies. The system we propose here will provide a simple and highly effective anti-infection coating technology for VAD drivelines, with relevance to a broad range of other implantable medical devices.
The technology to be developed in Phase II will result in a simple and highly effective anti- infection coating technology for a broad range of implantable medical devices in addition to drivelines for VADs. Some specific areas that would utilize this technology would include catheters, medical bandages, bandages for burn and wound treatments, membranes for respiratory systems, cuffs for ancillary ports for dialysis, chemotherapy etc., membranes for water purification, and membranes for air purification.