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Instant clot forming and antibacterial wound dressings: Achieving hemostasis in trauma injuries with S-nitroso-N-acetylpenicillamine-tranexamic acid-propolis formulation.

Wound infection and excessive blood loss are the two major challenges associated with trauma injuries that account for 10% of annual deaths in the United States. Nitric oxide (NO) is a gasotransmitter cell signaling molecule that plays a crucial role in the natural wound healing process due to its antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, cell proliferation, and tissue remodeling abilities. Tranexamic acid (TXA), a prothrombotic agent, has been used topically and systemically to control blood loss in reported cases of epistaxis and combat-related trauma injuries. Its properties could be incorporated in wound dressings to induce immediate clot formation, which is a key factor in controlling excessive blood loss. This study introduces a novel, instant clot-forming NO-releasing dressing, and fabricated using a strategic bi-layer configuration. The layer adjacent to the wound was designed with TXA suspended on a resinous bed of propolis, which is a natural bioadhesive possessing antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. The base layer, located furthest away from the wound, has an NO donor, S-nitroso-N-acetylpenicillamine (SNAP), embedded in a polymeric bed of Carbosil®, a copolymer of polycarbonate urethane and silicone. Propolis was integrated with a uniform layer of TXA in variable concentrations: 2.5, 5.0, and 7.5 vol % of propolis. This design of the TXA-SNAP-propolis (T-SP) wound dressing allows TXA to form a more stable clot by preventing the lysis of fibrin. The lactate dehydrogenase-based platelet adhesion assay showed an increase in fibrin activation with 7.5% T-SP as compared with control within the first 15 min of its application. A scanning electron microscope (SEM) confirmed the presence of a dense fibrin network stabilizing the clot for fabricated dressing. The antibacterial activity of NO and propolis resulted in a 98.9 ± 1% and 99.4 ± 1% reduction in the colony-forming unit of Staphylococcus aureus and multidrug-resistant Acinetobacter baumannii, respectively, which puts forward the fabricated dressing as an emergency first aid for traumatic injuries, preventing excessive blood loss and soil-borne infections.

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