An alarming increase in antibiotic-resistant bacterial strains is driving clinical demand for new antibacterial agents. One of the oldest antimicrobial agents is elementary silver (Ag), which has been used for thousands of years. Even today, elementary Ag is used for medical purposes such as treating burns, wounds, and microbial infections. In consideration of the effectiveness of elementary Ag, the present researchers generated effective antibacterial/antibiofilm agents by combining elementary Ag with biocompatible ultrashort peptide compounds. The innovative antibacterial agents comprised a hybrid peptide bound to Ag nanoparticles (IVFK/Ag NPs). These were generated by photoionizing a biocompatible ultrashort peptide, thus reducing Ag ions to form Ag NPs with a diameter of 6 nm. The IVFK/Ag NPs demonstrated promising antibacterial/antibiofilm activity against reference Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria compared with commercial Ag NPs. Through morphological changes in Escherichia coli and Staphylococcus aureus, we proposed that the mechanism of action for IVFK/Ag NPs derives from their ability to disrupt bacterial membranes. In terms of safety, the IVFK/Ag NPs demonstrated biocompatibility in the presence of human dermal fibroblast cells, and concentrations within the minimal inhibitory concentration had no significant effect on cell viability. These results demonstrated that hybrid peptide/Ag NPs hold promise as a biocompatible material with strong antibacterial/antibiofilm properties, allowing them to be applied across a wide range of applications in tissue engineering and regenerative medicine.
Bibliographical noteKAUST Repository Item: Exported on 2021-11-25
Acknowledgements: This work was supported by the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST), Thuwal, Saudi Arabia. K.A.S. gratefully acknowledges the Taibah University (Saudi Arabia) for financial support.