Oxidative nanopatterning of titanium generates mesoporous surfaces with antimicrobial properties
Fabio Variola,1,2 Sylvia Francis Zalzal,3 Annie Leduc,3 Jean Barbeau,3 Antonio Nanci3
1Faculty of Engineering, Department of Mechanical Engineering, 2Faculty of Science, Department of Physics, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, ON, 3Faculty of Dental Medicine, Université de Montréal, Montreal, QC, Canada
Abstract: Mesoporous surfaces generated by oxidative nanopatterning have the capacity to selectively regulate cell behavior, but their impact on microorganisms has not yet been explored. The main objective of this study was to test the effects of such surfaces on the adherence of two common bacteria and one yeast strain that are responsible for nosocomial infections in clinical settings and biomedical applications. In addition, because surface characteristics are known to affect bacterial adhesion, we further characterized the physicochemical properties of the mesoporous surfaces. Focused ion beam (FIB) was used to generate ultrathin sections for elemental analysis by energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDS), nanobeam electron diffraction (NBED), and high-angle annular dark field (HAADF) scanning transmission electron microscopy (STEM) imaging. The adherence of Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli and Candida albicans onto titanium disks with mesoporous and polished surfaces was compared. Disks with the two surfaces side-by-side were also used for direct visual comparison. Qualitative and quantitative results from this study indicate that bacterial adhesion is significantly hindered by the mesoporous surface. In addition, we provide evidence that it alters structural parameters of C. albicans that determine its invasiveness potential, suggesting that microorganisms can sense and respond to the mesoporous surface. Our findings demonstrate the efficiency of a simple chemical oxidative treatment in generating nanotextured surfaces with antimicrobial capacity with potential applications in the implant manufacturing industry and hospital setting.
Keywords: mesoporosity, surface characterization, microorganisms, adhesion
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