Biomaterials Designed for Wound Care

     Wounds can result from diverse traumatic causes such as burns, motor vehicle accidents, or battlefield injuries, or they can result from non-traumatic sources such as diabetes or melanoma.  Wounds can be relatively simple, such as a burned hand caused by contact with a hot pot, which has a limited risk of infection.  Or, they can involve multiple types of trauma from a battlefield injury or a car crash, where infection is almost a certainty.  Moreover, the process of wound healing is a complex series of events that begins at the moment of injury and can continue for months, and where infection(s) complicate the process.

     Because our research goal is to design biomaterials that speed wound healing and reduce infection, biomaterials designed for wound care must be optimized for the type of wound involved, and ideally for the point in the healing process where medical intervention is being made. Our research, in different projects, investigates biomaterials designed for each stage in the healing process. Because wound healing is a cascade from the initial establishment of hemostasis, and inflammation, to angiogenesis and granulation tissue remodeling, our ultimate goal is to design complex polymer materials that would maximally support this progression.  Our ideal biomaterial will provide needed structural support and scaffolding to promote growth of native cells, as well as secreting anti-infective and other factors to support desirable cells and inhibit undesirable ones.

Nanospheres for Topical Drug Delivery: Prevention of Burn Progression