According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and prevention, at least 2 million people in the United States become infected with antibiotic-resistant bacteria, and at least 23,000 people die each year as a direct result of those infections. One alternative to traditional antibiotics is bacteriophage (phage) therapy. Phage therapy utilizes bacteria-specific viruses to infect and kill bacteria cells. The specificity of these viruses is beneficial in that phage used for therapeutic purposes do not harm the human microbiota, nor do phage infect eukaryotic cells. It has been discovered that iron-doped apatite nanoparticles (IDANPs) significantly enhance phage killing of bacteria cells. The biocompatibility of apatite, coupled with its effectiveness as an adjuvant to enhance an alternative antibiotic therapy, makes it of interest for medical applications. Previously, researchers have encased phage in a microfluidic channel in coaxially electrospun fibers, allowing phage to remain viable after several weeks storage at 4 °C. Here, we have constructed a polymer fiber layer using electrospinning (ES) for delivery of IDANP adjuvants to compliment phage treatment delivery fibers. The IDANP delivery layer constructed is composed of polyethylene oxide (PEO) doped with the nanoparticles. When compared to media-only and IDANP-only controls, results show IDANPs delivered through a PEO fiber mesh remain effective at enhancement of phage infectivity.
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