Antimicrobial Medical Textiles

Yuan Gao and Robin Cranston had studied the recent advances in antimicrobial treatments for textiles. In this study, they revealed the requirements for  antimicrobial finishing, qualitative and quantitative evaluations of antimicrobial efficacy, the application methods of antimicrobial agents and some of the most recent developments in antimicrobial treatments of textiles using various active agents such as silver, quaternary ammonium salts, polyhexamethylene biguanide, triclosan, chitosan, dyes and regenerable N-halamine compounds and peroxyacids [7].

Kimiran Erdem, A., et al, evaluated the antimicrobial activity of fabrics functionalized with dimethlytetradecyl (3-trimethoxysilyl) ammonium chloride. They were used polyester/cotton (38% polyester- 62%cotton) blended fabric, the antimicrobial effect of fabrics was determined by EN ISO 20645:2004 (ager diffusion plate test) and AATTC Test Method 147-2004 (parallel streak method) against Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli and Klebsiella pneumoniae bacteria, and also after 5, 10 and 20 wash cycles against S-aureus. They concluded that the most susceptible bacterium was S-aureus in all standard test methods for unwashed fabrics, antibacterial activity was continued by decreasing even after washing cycles. Unwashed antimicrobial swatches provided 98% decreased for recoverable Saureus in 1hr. contact time [8].

Parikh, D. V., et al, had studied the antimicrobial Ag/Na carboxymethyl cotton burn dressings, were developed by partial cation exchange of sodium by silver from sodium carboxymethyl cotton gauze/nonwovens through treatment with silver nitrate in an 85/15 ethanol/water medium and they were concluded that an enhanced burn treatment was possible using a highly moisture retentive sodium carboxy-methyl gauze instead of conventional gauze could be used with silver nitrate.

The carboxymethyl gauze’s capacity to hold a large amount of antimicrobial solution was created the possibility for better antimicrobial treatment. From the behavior of antimicrobial release and the suppression of bacterial and fungal proliferation, it could be apparent that the dressings containing the silver antimicrobial agent would protect wound surfaces from microbial invasion and effectively suppress bacterial proliferation [9].

Kathirvelu. S., et al, carried out a research work on the Synthesis and characterization of nanosized zinc oxide particles. They were applied ZnO nanoparticles to 100% cotton and polyester/cotton samples to impart anti-bacterial activity to the treated textile. The effectiveness of the treatment was assessed through standardized tests for anti-bacterial activity before and after washing. They concluded that the antibacterial activity performance of ZnO nanoparticles could be efficiently transferred to fabric materials through the application of ZnO nanoparticles on the surface of both woven and knitted cotton and polyester/cotton blended fabrics [10].

Mirjana Kostic, et al, studied the antimicrobial textile prepared by silver deposition on dielectric barrier discharge treated cotton/ polyester fabric. They were carried out a series of the DBD fabric treatments in order to determine the most suitable experimental conditions for the DBD activation of the fabric surface, while the optimal conditions for silver ions sorption by Co/PES fabrics were determined by changing sorption conditions and the obtained results were confirmed that the practicability of the plasma modification process and furthermore it showed that with some delays in the  silver ion sorption could increase in the amount of the sorbed silver ions; the maximum sorption capacity of modified Co/PES fabrics was 0.135mmol of Ag+ ions per gram of a fabric [11].

Roman Jantas, and Katarzyna Górna, had studied the antimicrobial finishing of cotton fabrics. In this study, they were given the Antibacterial properties to the surface of a cotton fabric by a two-stage process of chemical modification. First, the fabric was treated with chloroacetyl chloride in Tetrahydrofurane (THF) using pyridine as a catalyst to incorporate chloroacetate groups. During the second stage, the chloroacetylated cotton was reacted with a potassium salt of a bioactive 1-naphthylacetic acid to prepare a cellulose-1-naphthylacetic acid adduct.

They obtained the results in such a way that the existence of a chemical linkage between 1-naphtylacetic acid and the cellulose chains was confirmed. As a result of this modification, the cotton fabric surface becomes hydrophobic, and the fabric thermal stability was decreased. The hydrolysis in the heterogeneous phase of adducts showed that the release of the bioactive compound was dependent on the pH values of the medium [12].

Mahmet Orhan, et al, had carried out a research work on the use of triclosan as antibacterial agent in textiles. In this study, they used 100% single knitted cotton fabric & applied triclosan on cotton fabrics as an antimicrobial agent and studied its durability to repeated home laundering. They were exposed the samples to acidic, basic and synthetic urine solutions as simulated wearing conditions, to evaluate the effects of environmental conditions on activity of triclosan. They concluded that the raw fabrics had the lowest activity and the bleaching pretreatment caused the increase in antimicrobial activity and significant reduction in bacterial growth and showed the best activity, especially against S-aureus, this was due to hydrogen peroxide acts as an oxidant by producing hydroxyl free radicals (OH) which attack essential cell components, including lipids proteins, and DNA. On the other hand Gram negative bacteria, while the repeated home laundering, and acidic, basic and urine conditions negatively affect the activity [13].

Deepti Gupta & Ankur Laha had evaluated the antimicrobial activity of cotton fabric. In this study, they treated cotton fabric with the tannin-rich extract of Quercus Infectoria (QI) plant in combination with alum, copper and ferrous mordants. QI extracts showed good activity at 12% concentration (owf), inhibiting the microbial growth by 45-60%.

The microbial growth inhibition increases to 70-90% when alum and copper sulphate were used for mordanting. However, they got the antimicrobial activity was completely lost when ferrous sulphate was used, that was  due to tannin-rich dye QI and the biological activity of tannins was probably affected to a great extent by the molar content and spatial configuration of the o-phenolic hydroxyl groups. They concluded that the cotton textiles could be successfully treated with QI to produce bioactive textiles from natural ecofriendly materials [14].

Sathianarayanan, M. P., et al had studied the antimicrobial finish for cotton fabric from herbal products. They applied herbal extracts from the Ocimum sanctum (tulsi leaf) and rind of Punica granatum (pomegranate) to cotton fabric by the method of direct application, micro-encapsulation, resin cross-linking and also their various combinations.

Antimicrobial activities of the treated fabrics were evaluated by both qualitative (AATCC-147) and quantitative (AATCC-147-1988). Except the method of direct application, all other treatments showed good washing durability up to 15 washes. The surface morphological studied using SEM showed the surface coating, microcapsules & some fibrillations. A small decrease in tensile strength and crease recovery angle was observed for resin treated and micro-encapsulated fabrics respectively. But in combined processes no significant changes were observed [15].