Wound Healing Bionanocomposites Based on Castor Oil Polymeric Films Reinforced with Chitosan-Modified ZnO Nanoparticles.Biomacromolecules. 2015 Sep 14; 16(9):2631-44.B
Castor oil (CO), which is a readily available, relatively inexpensive, and environmentally benign nonedible oil, has been successfully used as matrix material to prepare biocompatible and biodegradable nanocomposite films filled with chitosan (CS)-modified ZnO nanoparticles. The biocomposites were synthesized via a simple and versatile solution mixing and casting method. The morphology, structure, thermal stability, water absorption, biodegradability, cytocompatibility, barrier, mechanical, viscoelastic, antibacterial, and wound healing properties of the films have been analyzed. FT-IR spectra were used to obtain information about the nanoparticle-matrix interactions. The thermal stability, hydrophilicity, degree of porosity, water absorption, water vapor transmission rate (WVTR), oxygen permeability (Dk), and biodegradability of the films increased with the CS-ZnO loading. The WVTR and Dk data obtained are within the range of values reported for commercial wound dressings. Tensile tests demonstrated that the nanocomposites displayed a good balance between elasticity, strength, and flexibility under both dry and simulated body fluid (SBF) environments. The flexibility increased in a moist atmosphere due to the plasticization effect of absorbed water. The nanocomposites also exhibited significantly enhanced dynamic mechanical performance (storage modulus and glass transition temperature) than neat CO under different humidity conditions. The antibacterial activity of the films against Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus aureus, and Micrococcus luteus bacteria was investigated in the presence and the absence of UV light. The biocide effect increased progressively with the CS-ZnO content and was systematically stronger against Gram-positive cells. Composites with nanoparticle loading ≤5.0 wt % exhibited very good in vitro cytocompatibility and enabled a faster wound healing than neat CO and control gauze, hence showing great potential to be applied as antibacterial wound dressings.