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International Journal of Molecular Sciences




Advances in the number and type of available biomaterials have improved medical devices such as catheters, stents, pacemakers, prosthetic joints, and orthopedic devices. The introduction of a foreign material into the body comes with a risk of microbial colonization and subsequent infection. Infections of surgically implanted devices often lead to device failure, which leads to increased patient morbidity and mortality. The overuse and improper use of antimicrobials has led to an alarming rise and spread of drug-resistant infections. To overcome the problem of drug-resistant infections, novel antimicrobial biomaterials are increasingly being researched and developed. Hydrogels are a class of 3D biomaterials consisting of a hydrated polymer network with tunable functionality. As hydrogels are customizable, many different antimicrobial agents, such as inorganic molecules, metals, and antibiotics have been incorporated or tethered to them. Due to the increased prevalence of antibiotic resistance, antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are being increasingly explored as alternative agents. AMP-tethered hydrogels are being increasingly examined for antimicrobial properties and practical applications, such as wound-healing. Here, we provide a recent update, from the last 5 years of innovations and discoveries made in the development of photopolymerizable, self-assembling, and AMP-releasing hydrogels.


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Publication of this article was supported by the 2022-23 Rowan University Libraries Open Access Publishing Fund.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.