Sterilization procedure for temperature-sensitive hydrogels loaded with silver nanoparticles for clinical applications

Diana Rafael, Fernanda Andrade, Francesc Martinez-Trucharte, Jana Basas, Joaquín Seras-Franzoso, Marta Palau, Xavier Gomis, Marc Pérez-Burgos, Alberto Blanco, Alba López-Fernández, Roberto Vélez, Ibane Abasolo, Màrius Aguirre, Joan Gavaldà, Simó Schwartz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearch

21 Citations (Scopus)


© 2019 by the authors. Hydrogels (HG) have recognized benefits as drug delivery platforms for biomedical applications. Their high sensitivity to sterilization processes is however one of the greatest challenges regarding their clinical translation. Concerning infection diseases, prevention of post-operatory related infections is crucial to ensure appropriate patient recovery and good clinical outcomes. Silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) have shown good antimicrobial properties but sustained release at the right place is required. Thus, we produced and characterized thermo-sensitive HG based on Pluronic® F127 loaded with AgNPs (HG-AgNPs) and their integrity and functionality after sterilization by dry-heat and autoclave methods were carefully assessed. The quality attributes of HG-AgNPs were seriously affected by dry-heat methods but not by autoclaving methods, which allowed to ensure the required sterility. Also, direct sterilization of the final HG-AgNPs product proved more effective than of the raw material, allowing simpler production procedures in non-sterile conditions. The mechanical properties were assessed in post mortem rat models and the HG-AgNPs were tested for its antimicrobial properties in vitro using extremely drug-resistant (XDR) clinical strains. The produced HG-AgNPs prove to be versatile, easy produced and cost-effective products, with activity against XDR strains and an adequate gelation time and spreadability features and optimal for in situ biomedical applications.
Original languageEnglish
Article number380
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2019


  • Anti-bacterial agents
  • Chirurgic applications
  • Hydrogels
  • Poloxamer
  • Post-operative infections
  • Silver nanoparticles
  • Sterilization
  • XDR strains


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