Silver-releasing bioactive glass nanoparticles for infected tissue regeneration

Natalia Pajares-Chamorro, Sandra Hernández-Escobar, Yadav Wagley, Parker Acevedo, Madeline Cramer, Stephen Badylak, Neal D. Hammer, Jonathan Hardy, Kurt Hankenson, Xanthippi Chatzistavrou*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Bacterial infections represent a formidable challenge, often leaving behind significant bone defects post-debridement and necessitating prolonged antibiotic treatments. The rise of antibiotic-resistant bacterial strains further complicates infection management. Bioactive glass nanoparticles have been presented as a promising substitute for bone defects and as carriers for therapeutic agents against microorganisms. Achieving consistent incorporation of ions into BGNs has proven challenging and restricted to a maximum ion concentration, especially when reducing the particle size. This study presents a notable achievement in the synthesis of 10 nm-sized Ag-doped bioactive glass nanoparticles (Ag-BGNs) using a modified yet straightforward Stöber method. The successful incorporation of essential elements, including P, Ca, Al, and Ag, into the glass structure at the intended concentrations (i.e., CaO wt% above 20 %) was confirmed by EDS, signifying a significant advancement in nanoscale biomaterial engineering. While exhibiting a spherical morphology and moderate dispersity, these nanoparticles tend to form submicron-sized aggregates outside of a solution state. The antibacterial effectiveness against MRSA was established across various experimental conditions, with Ag-BGNs effectively sterilizing planktonic bacteria without the need for antibiotics. Remarkably, when combined with oxacillin or fosfomycin, Ag-BGNs demonstrated a potent synergistic effect, restoring antibacterial capabilities against MRSA strains resistant to these antibiotics when used alone. Ag-BGNs exhibited potential in promoting human mesenchymal stromal cell proliferation, inducing the upregulation of osteoblast gene markers, and significantly contributing to bone regeneration in mice. This innovative synthesis protocol holds substantial promise for the development of biomaterials dedicated to the regeneration of infected tissue.

Original languageEnglish
Article number213656
JournalBiomaterials Advances
StatePublished - Nov 2023
Externally publishedYes


  • Bioactive glass nanoparticles
  • Biofilm
  • Bone regeneration
  • Macrophage
  • Silver
  • Stöber method


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