Indexed on: 06 Dec '14Published on: 06 Dec '14Published in: Annals of Biomedical Engineering
Bone fractures and non-union defects often require surgical intervention where biomaterials are used to correct the defect, and approximately 10% of these procedures are compromised by bacterial infection. Currently, treatment options are limited to sustained, high doses of antibiotics and surgical debridement of affected tissue, leaving a significant, unmet need for the development of therapies to combat device-associated biofilm and infections. Engineering implants to prevent infection is a desirable material characteristic. Tissue engineered scaffolds for bone repair provide a means to both regenerate bone and serve as a base for adding antimicrobial agents. Incorporating anti-infection properties into regenerative medicine therapies could improve clinical outcomes and reduce the morbidity and mortality associated with biomaterial implant-associated infections. This review focuses on current animal models and technologies available to assess bone repair in the context of infection, antimicrobial agents to fight infection, the current state of antimicrobial scaffolds, and future directions in the field.