Smart bandages--a colourful approach to early stage infection detection & control in wound care.

Medical hypotheses

PubMedID: 23245203

Brocklesby KL, Johns SC, Jones AE, Sharp D, Smith RB. Smart bandages--a colourful approach to early stage infection detection & control in wound care. Med Hypotheses. 2013;80(3):237-40.
With the recent increase in bacterial resistance to conventional antibiotics, the early-stage detection and control of infection has become imperative in the fight against opportunistic pathogens in healthcare. The traditional ß-lactam wonder-drugs (e.g. penicillin and cephalosporins), are rendered inactive due to enzymatic hydrolysis by bacterial ß-lactamase enzymes as a bacterial defence mechanism. However, this deactivation mechanism produces different responses in the two aforementioned drugs - with the cephalosporins showing a molecular rearrangement mechanism which could be utilised for prodrug delivery. This unique mechanism could mean that inactive forms of cephalosporin antibiotics, once used as chemotherapeutics in oncology, could once again be used in the fight against disease as sensors to detect and treat bacterial colonisation. Therefore, we hypothesize that cephalosporin-dye bandages might provide an effective method to visually detect, and subsequently control, the early stages of an infection using photoantimicrobial chemotherapy (PACT).