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Decreased Pseudomonas aeruginosa biofilm formation on nanomodified endotracheal tubes: a dynamic lung model

Authors Machado M, Webster T

Received 11 March 2016

Accepted for publication 15 May 2016

Published 9 August 2016 Volume 2016:11 Pages 3825—3831


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Professor Carlos Rinaldi

Mary C Machado,1 Thomas J Webster2

1Center for Biomedical Engineering, Division of Engineering Brown University, RI, USA; 2Department of Orthopaedics, Division of Engineering Brown University, RI, USA

Abstract: Ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP) is a serious complication of mechanical ventilation that has been shown to be associated with increased mortality rates and medical costs in the pediatric intensive care unit. Currently, there is no cost-effective solution to the problems posed by VAP. Endotracheal tubes (ETTs) that are resistant to bacterial colonization and that inhibit biofilm formation could provide a novel solution to the problems posed by VAP. The objective of this in vitro study was to evaluate differences in the growth of Pseudomonas aeruginosa on unmodified polyvinyl chloride (PVC) ETTs and on ETTs etched with a fungal lipase, Rhizopus arrhizus, to create nanoscale surface features. These differences were evaluated using an in vitro model of the pediatric airway to simulate a ventilated patient in the pediatric intensive care unit. Each experiment was run for 24 hours and was supported by computational models of the ETT. Dynamic conditions within the ETT had an impact on the location of bacterial growth within the tube. These conditions also quantitatively affected bacterial growth especially within the areas of tube curvature. Most importantly, experiments in the in vitro model revealed a 2.7 log reduction in the number (colony forming units/mL) of P. aeruginosa on the nanoroughened ETTs compared to the untreated PVC ETTs after 24 hours. This reduction in total colony forming units/mL along the x-axis of the tube was similar to previous studies completed for Staphylococcus aureus. Thus, this dynamic study showed that lipase etching can create surface features of nanoscale roughness on PVC ETTs that decrease bacterial attachment of P. aeruginosa without the use of antibiotics and may provide clinicians with an effective and inexpensive tool to combat VAP.

Keywords: biofilm, laminar flow, ventilator-associated pneumonia, nanotechnology, endotracheal tubes, Pseudomonas aeruginosa

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