Nylon-6/chitosan core/shell antimicrobial nanofibers for the prevention of mesh-associated surgical site infection

Antonios Keirouz, Norbert Radacsi, Qun Ren, Alex Dommann, Guido Beldi, Katharina Maniura-Weber, René M. Rossi, Giuseppino Fortunato

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

43 Citations (SciVal)


The state-of-the-art hernia meshes, used in hospitals for hernia repair, are predominantly polymeric textile-based constructs that present high mechanical strength, but lack antimicrobial properties. Consequently, preventing bacterial colonization of implanted prosthetic meshes is of major clinical relevance for patients undergoing hernia repair. In this study, the co-axial electrospinning technique was investigated for the development of a novel mechanically stable structure incorporating dual drug release antimicrobial action. Core/shell structured nanofibers were developed, consisting of Nylon-6 in the core, to provide the appropriate mechanical stability, and Chitosan/Polyethylene oxide in the shell to provide bacteriostatic action. The core/shell structure consisted of a binary antimicrobial system incorporating 5-chloro-8-quinolinol in the chitosan shell, with the sustained release of Poly(hexanide) from the Nylon-6 core of the fibers. Homogeneous nanofibers with a "beads-in-fiber" architecture were observed by TEM, and validated by FTIR and XPS. The composite nanofibrous meshes significantly advance the stress-strain responses in comparison to the counterpart single-polymer electrospun meshes. The antimicrobial effectiveness was evaluated in vitro against two of the most commonly occurring pathogenic bacteria; S. aureus and P. aeruginosa, in surgical site infections. This study illustrates how the tailoring of core/shell nanofibers can be of interest for the development of active antimicrobial surfaces.

Original languageEnglish
Article number51
JournalJournal of Nanobiotechnology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 18 Mar 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 The Author(s).

Copyright 2020 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.


  • Antimicrobial fibers
  • Chitosan
  • Co-axial electrospinning
  • Drug release
  • Hernia meshes
  • Nylon-6

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Molecular Medicine
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology
  • Pharmaceutical Science


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