Biofilm maturity studies indicate sharp debridement opens a time-dependent therapeutic window
Wolcott, Randall D.
Rumbaugh, K. P.
James, Garth A.
Stewart, Philip S.
Dowd, S. E.
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Objective: To investigate the hypothesis that newly formed wound biofilms (or bioburdens) are more susceptible to antimicrobial treatment.Method: Four separate and distinct models were performed by four separate biofilm research laboratories to evaluate the resistance of biofilms to antimicrobial treatments over time. These included a drip-flow biofilm model along with a hydrodebridement study, a porcine skin punch biopsy ex vivo model, a mouse chronic wound model and clinical longitudinal debridement study.Results: All four models showed that, within the first 24 hours, the biofilm community was more susceptible to the selected antibiotics, and after maturing for up to 48 hours became increasingly tolerant. In each model, there was at least a 24-hour period in which the biofilms were more resistant to antibiotics. Each of the models utilised showed a significant decrease in the resistance of the biofilm/ burden to gentamicin for up to 24 hours with a confidence interval of at least 95%. The resistance increased in each of the models by 48 hours and reached original resistance levels by 72 hours.Conclusion: These data suggest the principles of biofilm-based wound care, along with the use of serial debridement to continually remove mature biofilm, followed by biofilm wound management strategies, including topical antibiotics while the bioburden is still immature and more susceptible, are valid.Conflict of interest: SED is director of Research and Testing Laboratory, a commercial laboratory that develops molecular methods for diagnosis of wounds and infections and CEO of Pathogenius Laboratories, which is a molecular pathogen diagnostic company with a focus on chronic wounds. RDW is medical director of Southwest Regional Wound Care Center and inventor of biofilm-based wound care principles.
Wolcott RD, Rumbaugh KP, James G, Schultz G, Phillips P, Yang Q, Watters C, Stewart PS, Dowd SE, "Biofilm maturity studies indicate sharp debridement opens a time-dependent therapeutic window," J Wound Care, 2010 19(8):320-328.