Keynote Lecture

Making the Hospital a Safer Place by the Sonochemical Coating of the Textiles with Antibacterial Nanoparticles

Professor Aharon Gedanken
Department of Chemistry
Bar-Ilan University

Abstract: Sonochemistry is an excellent technique to coat nanomaterials on various substrates, imparting new properties to the substrates. After a short demonstration of coating NPs on ceramics and stainless steel, I'll present the coating of textiles such as polyester, cotton, and nylon. In all cases a homogeneous coating of NPs was achieved. Silver is known for generations as antibacterial, and indeed the Ag NPs have killed the gram-negative E. Coli (strain 1313) as well as the gram-positive Staphylococus aureus (strain 195) bacteria very efficiently. Lately, the FDA shows less enthusiasm towards nanoAg, as a result, we have moved to NPs of ZnO, and CuO as antibacterial agents. They were coated on the above-mentioned fabrics and showed excellent antibacterial properties. The coated textiles were examined for the changes in the mechanical strength of the fabric. A special attention was dedicated to the question whether the NPs are leaching off the fabric when washed repeatedly. The coated ZnO NPs on cotton underwent 65 washing cycles at 92 0 C in water in a Hospital washing machine, no NPs were found in the washing solution and the antibacterial behavior was maintained. Recently, an experiment was conducted at PIGOROV Hospital in Sofia, Bulgaria in which one operation room was equipped with antibacterial textiles, namely, bed sheets, pajamas, pillow cover, and bed cover. 22 Patients in this operation room were probed for bacterial infections. Their infection level was compared with 17 control patient that were using regular textiles. The results are demonstrating that a lower infection level is observed for those patient exposed to the antibacterial textiles. Lately, we have synthesized NPs of a new material, Cu0.89Zn0.11O that kills bacteria 10,000 times better than ZnO or CuO. The mechanism of the killing was studied and will be presented. Coating of Catheters with the above mentioned NPs were performed and the coated catheters were inserted in rabbits. Results showed that the urine of the rabbits was not contaminated with bacteria and the growth of biofilm on the Catheters is avoided.

Brief Biography of the Speaker: Emeritus Prof. Aharon Gedanken obtained his M. Sc. from Bar-Ilan University, and his Ph. D. degree from Tel Aviv University, Israel. After his postdoctoral research at USC in Los Angeles, he returned to Bar-Ilan in 1975 as a senior faculty. He was a visiting scientist at AT&T Bell Laboratories in 1980-8l, 1984, and 1987-88, and at NIDDK, NIH in the summers of 1989, 1990 and 1991. In 1994 he switched his research interest from Spectroscopy to Nanotechnology. His special synthetic methods of nanomaterials include: Sonochemistry, Microwave Superheating, Sonoelectrochemistry, and Reactions under Autogenic Pressure at Elevated Temperatures (RAPET). Since 2004 he is mostly focused on the applications of nanomaterials. Gedanken has published 762 per-reviewed manuscripts in international journals, and has applied for 38 Patents. His H-Index is 80. Gedanken has served as the Department chairman as well as the Dean of the Faculty of Exact Sciences at Bar-Ilan University. He is on the editorial boards of 7 international journals. He leads a group of 16 research people. He was a partner in five EC FP7 projects one of them, SONO, was coordinated by him. This project was announced by the EC as a “Success Story”. He was the Israeli representative to the NMP (Nano, Materials, and Processes) committee of EC in FP7. He was awarded the prize of the Israel Vacuum Society and the Israel Chemical Society for excellence in Research.

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