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Evaluation of sericin/collagen membranes as prospective wound dressing biomaterial

Tezcaner, Ayşen
Deveci, M. Salih
Gecit, M. Rusen
Keskin, Dilek
Sericin, a silk protein, has high potential for use in biomedical applications. In this study, wound dressing membranes of Sericin (S) and Collagen (C) were prepared by glutaraldehyde cross-linking at S/C; 2:1,1:1, 1:2, and 0:1 weight ratios. They were stable in water for 4 weeks. However, increasing the proportion of sericin had decreasing effect on the membrane stability. Water swelling property of membranes was enhanced with sericin. The highest water swelling was obtained in 1:1 group (9.06 g/g), but increasing collagen or sericin content in the membranes had a diminishing effect. Highest water vapor transmission rate was obtained with 1:2 group (1013.80 g/m(2)/day). Oxygen permeability results showed that 1:2 (7.67 mg/L) and 2:1 (7.85 mg/L) SIC groups were better than the other groups. While sericin decreased the tensile strength and elongation of membranes, it increased modulus. Sericin also increased brittleness of membranes, but their UTS range (24.93-44.92 MPa) was still suitable for a wound dressing. Membranes were not penetrable to microorganisms. Cytotoxicity studies showed that fibroblasts and keratinocytes attached and gained their characteristic morphologies. They also proliferated on membranes significantly. After 1 week of subcutaneous implantation, a fibrous capsule formed around all membranes with an acute inflammation. Sericin containing membranes showed signs of degradation (at 2nd week), while collagen only membranes remained largely intact. Eventually, sericin containing membranes degraded in 3 weeks with moderate inflammatory response. Overall results suggest that sericin/collagen membranes would be favorable as wound dressing material when sericin ratio is less than or equal to the collagen component. (C) 2011, The Society for Biotechnology, Japan. All rights reserved.