Beneficial properties of room temperature processed silica sol-gels as resorbable and biocompatible materials for the controlled release of drugs and macromolecules have been described before. Recently, it was shown that a thin sol-gel film can be used for the controlled delivery of antibiotics such as vancomycin. It was also demonstrated that the release and degradation properties of the sol-gel films can be tailored via processing parameters. In this work, we evaluated the in vitro and in vivo bactericidal effects of vancomycin-containing thin sol-gel films applied on Ti-alloy intramedullary nails. Both the in vitro and the in vivo results demonstrate a pronounced bactericidal effect of the sol-gel/antibiotic films. This study suggests that thin antibiotic-containing sol-gel film holds great promise for the prevention and treatment of bone infections.
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