Validation of a novel murine wound model of Acinetobacter baumannii infection.
ABSTRACT: Patients recovering from traumatic injuries or surgery often require weeks to months of hospitalization, increasing the risk for wound and surgical site infections caused by ESKAPE pathogens, which include A. baumannii (the ESKAPE pathogens are Enterococcus faecium, Staphylococcus aureus, Klebsiella pneumoniae, Acinetobacter baumannii, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and Enterobacter species). As new therapies are being developed to counter A. baumannii infections, animal models are also needed to evaluate potential treatments. Here, we present an excisional, murine wound model in which a diminutive inoculum of a clinically relevant, multidrug-resistant A. baumannii isolate can proliferate, form biofilms, and be effectively treated with antibiotics. The model requires a temporary, cyclophosphamide-induced neutropenia to establish an infection that can persist. A 6-mm-diameter, full-thickness wound was created in the skin overlying the thoracic spine, and after the wound bed was inoculated, it was covered with a dressing for 7 days. Uninoculated control wounds healed within 13 days, whereas infected, placebo-treated wounds remained unclosed beyond 21 days. Treated and untreated wounds were assessed with multiple quantitative and qualitative techniques that included gross pathology, weight loss and recovery, wound closure, bacterial burden, 16S rRNA community profiling, histopathology, peptide nucleic acid-fluorescence in situ hybridization, and scanning electron microscopy assessment of biofilms. The range of differences that we are able to identify with these measures in antibiotic- versus placebo-treated animals provides a clear window within which novel antimicrobial therapies can be assessed. The model can be used to evaluate antimicrobials for their ability to reduce specific pathogen loads in wounded tissues and clear biofilms. Ultimately, the mouse model approach allows for highly powered studies and serves as an initial multifaceted in vivo assessment prior to testing in larger animals.
Project description:Trauma is one of the leading causes of death in people under the age of 49 and complications due to wound infection are the primary cause of death in the first few days after injury. The ESKAPE pathogens are a group of bacteria that are a leading cause of hospital-acquired infections and a major concern in terms of antibiotic resistance. Here, we demonstrate a novel and highly accurate approach for the rapid identification of ESKAPE pathogens (Enterococcus faecium, Staphylococcus aureus, Klebsiella pneumoniae, Acinetobacter baumannii, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and Enterobacter spp.) directly from infected wounds in 3D in vitro skin models. Wounded skin models were inoculated with bacteria and left to incubate. Bacterial proteins were identified within minutes, directly from the wound, by liquid extraction surface analysis mass spectrometry. This approach was able to distinguish closely related strains and, unlike genomic approaches, can be modified to provide dynamic information about pathogen behaviour at the wound site. In addition, since human skin proteins were also identified, this method offers the opportunity to analyse both host and pathogen biomarkers during wound infection in near real-time.
Project description:OBJECTIVE:This study was designed to employ electroceutical principles, as an alternative to pharmacological intervention, to manage wound biofilm infection. Mechanism of action of a United States Food and Drug Administration-cleared wireless electroceutical dressing (WED) was tested in an established porcine chronic wound polymicrobial biofilm infection model involving inoculation with Pseudomonas aeruginosa PAO1 and Acinetobacter baumannii 19606. BACKGROUND:Bacterial biofilms represent a major wound complication. Resistance of biofilm toward pharmacologic interventions calls for alternative therapeutic strategies. Weak electric field has anti-biofilm properties. We have previously reported the development of WED involving patterned deposition of Ag and Zn on fabric. When moistened, WED generates a weak electric field without any external power supply and can be used as any other disposable dressing. METHODS:WED dressing was applied within 2?hours of wound infection to test its ability to prevent biofilm formation. Alternatively, WED was applied after 7 days of infection to study disruption of established biofilm. Wounds were treated with placebo dressing or WED twice a week for 56 days. RESULTS:Scanning electron microscopy demonstrated that WED prevented and disrupted wound biofilm aggregates. WED accelerated functional wound closure by restoring skin barrier function. WED blunted biofilm-induced expression of (1) P. aeruginosa quorum sensing mvfR (pqsR), rhlR and lasR genes, and (2) miR-9 and silencing of E-cadherin. E-cadherin is critically required for skin barrier function. Furthermore, WED rescued against biofilm-induced persistent inflammation by circumventing nuclear factor kappa B activation and its downstream cytokine responses. CONCLUSION:This is the first pre-clinical porcine mechanistic study to recognize the potential of electroceuticals as an effective platform technology to combat wound biofilm infection.
Project description:Chronic wound treatment is becoming increasingly difficult and costly, further exacerbated when wounds become infected. Bacterial biofilms cause most chronic wound infections and are notoriously resistant to antibiotic treatments. The need for new approaches to combat polymicrobial biofilms in chronic wounds combined with the growing antimicrobial resistance crisis means that honey is being revisited as a treatment option due to its broad-spectrum antimicrobial activity and low propensity for bacterial resistance. We assessed four well-characterised New Zealand honeys, quantified for their key antibacterial components, methylglyoxal, hydrogen peroxide and sugar, for their capacity to prevent and eradicate biofilms produced by the common wound pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa. We demonstrate that: (1) honey used at substantially lower concentrations compared to those found in honey-based wound dressings inhibited P. aeruginosa biofilm formation and significantly reduced established biofilms; (2) the anti-biofilm effect of honey was largely driven by its sugar component; (3) cells recovered from biofilms treated with sub-inhibitory honey concentrations had slightly increased tolerance to honey; and (4) honey used at clinically obtainable concentrations completely eradicated established P. aeruginosa biofilms. These results, together with their broad antimicrobial spectrum, demonstrate that manuka honey-based wound dressings are a promising treatment for infected chronic wounds, including those with P. aeruginosa biofilms.
Project description:We used a modified Walker-Mason scald burn rat model to demonstrate that Pseudomonas aeruginosa, a common opportunistic pathogen in the burn ward and notable biofilm former, establishes biofilms within deep partial-thickness burn wounds in rats.Deep partial-thickness burn wounds, ~10% of the TBSA, were created in anesthetized male Sprague-Dawley rats (350-450 g; n = 84). Immediately post-burn, 100 µl of P. aeruginosa in phosphate-buffered saline at 1 × 103, 1 × 104, or 1 × 105 cells/wound was spread over the burn surface . At 1, 3, 7, and 11 days post-burn, animals were euthanized and blood and tissue were collected for complete blood counts, colony-forming unit (CFU) counts, biofilm gene expression, histology, scanning electron microscopy (SEM), and myeloperoxidase activity in the burn eschar.P. aeruginosa developed robust biofilm wound infections, plateauing at ~1 × 109 CFU/g burn tissue within 7 days regardless of inoculum size. Expression of Pseudomonas alginate genes and other virulence factors in the infected wound indicated formation of mature P. aeruginosa biofilm within the burn eschar. Compared to un-inoculated wounds, P. aeruginosa infection caused both local and systemic immune responses demonstrated by changes in systemic neutrophil counts, histology, and myeloperoxidase activity within the burn wound. Additionally, SEM showed P. aeruginosa enmeshed within an extracellular matrix on the burn surface as well as penetrating 500-600 µm deep into the eschar.P. aeruginosa establishes biofilms within deep partial-thickness burn wounds and invades deep into the burned tissue. This new in vivo biofilm infection model is valuable for testing novel anti-biofilm agents to advance burn care.
Project description:Biofilms have been implicated in delayed wound healing, although the mechanisms by which biofilms impair wound healing are poorly understood. Many species of bacteria produce exotoxins and exoenzymes that may inhibit healing. In addition, oxygen consumption by biofilms, as well as responding leukocytes, may impede wound healing. In this study, we used oxygen microsensors to measure oxygen transects through in vitro-cultured biofilms, biofilms formed in vivo within scabs from a diabetic (db/db) mouse model, and ex vivo human chronic wound specimens. The results show that oxygen levels within mouse scabs had steep gradients that reached minima ranging from 17-72 mmHg on live mice and 6.4-1.1 mmHg on euthanized mice. The oxygen gradients in the mouse scabs were similar to those observed for clinical isolates cultured in vitro and for human ex vivo specimens. No oxygen gradients were observed for heat-killed mouse scabs, suggesting that active metabolism by the viable bacteria and host cells contributed to the reduced oxygen partial pressure of the scabs. To characterize the metabolic activities of the bacteria in the mouse scabs, we performed transcriptomics analyses of Pseudomonas aeruginosa biofilms associated with the db/db mice wounds using Affymetrix microarrays. The results demonstrated that the bacteria expressed genes for metabolic activities associated with cell growth. Interestingly, the transcriptome results indicated that the bacteria within the wounds also experienced oxygen-limitation stress. Among the bacterial genes that were expressed in vivo were genes associated with the Anr-mediated hypoxia-stress response. Other bacterial stress response genes highly expressed in vivo were genes associated with stationary-phase growth, osmotic stress, and RpoH-mediated heat shock stress. Overall, the results support the hypothesis that bacterial biofilms in chronic wounds promote chronicity by contributing to the maintenance of localized low oxygen tensions. Overall design: The following procedure was performed on two mice, resulting in two biological replicates. A punch biopsy wound was created on the dorsal surface of a diabetic mouse, subsequently infected with a P. aeruginosa biofilm two days post-wounding, and covered with semi-occlusive dressings for two weeks. At 28 days post wounding, the wound crust was surgically excised and RNA was extracted for analysis on Affymetrix P. aeruginosa microarrays. To conservatively identify the most abundant transcripts in the mouse wound scabs, the transcripts with the highest signal intensities (the top 5% of the transcripts represented on the arrays) were selected for further analysis. We sought to characterize the persistence of P. aeruginosa activity within biofilms in the mouse wound model by isolating and identifying mRNA from the wounds 28 days post infection.
Project description:Biofilms have been implicated in delayed wound healing, although the mechanisms by which biofilms impair wound healing are poorly understood. Many species of bacteria produce exotoxins and exoenzymes that may inhibit healing. In addition, oxygen consumption by biofilms, as well as responding leukocytes, may impede wound healing. In this study, we used oxygen microsensors to measure oxygen transects through in vitro-cultured biofilms, biofilms formed in vivo within scabs from a diabetic (db/db) mouse model, and ex vivo human chronic wound specimens. The results show that oxygen levels within mouse scabs had steep gradients that reached minima ranging from 17-72 mmHg on live mice and 6.4-1.1 mmHg on euthanized mice. The oxygen gradients in the mouse scabs were similar to those observed for clinical isolates cultured in vitro and for human ex vivo specimens. No oxygen gradients were observed for heat-killed mouse scabs, suggesting that active metabolism by the viable bacteria and host cells contributed to the reduced oxygen partial pressure of the scabs. To characterize the metabolic activities of the bacteria in the mouse scabs, we performed transcriptomics analyses of Pseudomonas aeruginosa biofilms associated with the db/db mice wounds using Affymetrix microarrays. The results demonstrated that the bacteria expressed genes for metabolic activities associated with cell growth. Interestingly, the transcriptome results indicated that the bacteria within the wounds also experienced oxygen-limitation stress. Among the bacterial genes that were expressed in vivo were genes associated with the Anr-mediated hypoxia-stress response. Other bacterial stress response genes highly expressed in vivo were genes associated with stationary-phase growth, osmotic stress, and RpoH-mediated heat shock stress. Overall, the results support the hypothesis that bacterial biofilms in chronic wounds promote chronicity by contributing to the maintenance of localized low oxygen tensions. Transcriptional profiling of two independent biological replicates of Pseudomonas aeruginosa biofilms, as grown to 72 hours and used as inocula applied to the murine wounds, was performed. A principle components analysis (PCA) was used to provide an overview of the transcriptome data from the 28-day mouse wound scab, comparing the data to the biofilm inoculum, and to published reports of P. aeruginosa biofilm and planktonic samples. The analysis shows that the transcriptome of the mouse wound scab was distinct from the biofilm inoculum that was applied to the wound, demonstrating a shift in biofilm gene expression following 28 days of infection. We sought to characterize P. aeruginosa activity within biofilms in the mouse wound model by isolating and identifying mRNA from the biofilms used as inocula and from the wound scabs 28 days post infection.
Project description:Wound infection is commonly observed after surgery and trauma but is difficult to diagnose and poorly defined in terms of objective clinical parameters. The assumption that bacteria in a wound correlate with infection is false; all wounds contain microorganisms, but not all wounds are clinically infected. This makes it difficult for clinicians to determine true wound infection, especially in wounds with pathogenic biofilms. If an infection is not properly treated, pathogenic virulence factors, such as rhamnolipids from Pseudomonas aeruginosa, can modulate the host immune response and cause tissue breakdown. Life-threatening sepsis can result if the organisms penetrate deep into host tissue. This communication describes the sensor development for five important clinical microbial pathogens commonly found in wounds: Staphylococcus aureus, P. aeruginosa, Candida albicans/auris, and Enterococcus faecalis (the SPaCE pathogens). The sensor contains liposomes encapsulating a self-quenched fluorescent dye. Toxins, expressed by SPaCE infecting pathogens in early-stage infected wounds, break down the liposomes, triggering dye release, thus changing the sensor color from yellow to green, an indication of infection. Five clinical species of bacteria and fungi, up to 20 strains each (totaling 83), were grown as early-stage biofilms in ex vivo porcine burn wounds. The biofilms were then swabbed, and the swab placed in the liposome suspension. The population density of selected pathogens in a porcine wound biofilm was quantified and correlated with colorimetric response. Over 88% of swabs switched the sensor on (107-108 CFU/swab). A pilot clinical study demonstrated a good correlation between sensor switch-on and early-stage wound infection.
Project description:We recently performed proteomic characterization of a modified collagen gel (MCG) dressing and reported promising effects of the gel in healing full-thickness excisional wounds. In this work, we test the translational relevance of our aforesaid findings by testing the dressing in a swine model of chronic ischemic wounds recently reported by our laboratory. Full-thickness excisional wounds were established in the center of bipedicle ischemic skin flaps on the backs of animals. Ischemia was verified by laser Doppler imaging, and MCG was applied to the test group of wounds. Seven days post wounding, macrophage recruitment to the wound was significantly higher in MCG-treated ischemic wounds. In vitro, MCG up-regulated expression of Mrc-1 (a reparative M2 macrophage marker) and induced the expression of anti-inflammatory cytokine interleukin (IL)-10 and of fibroblast growth factor-basic (?-FGF). An increased expression of CCR2, an M2 macrophage marker, was noted in the macrophages from MCG treated wounds. Furthermore, analyses of wound tissues 7 days post wounding showed up-regulation of transforming growth factor-?, vascular endothelial growth factor, von Willebrand's factor, and collagen type I expression in MCG-treated ischemic wounds. At 21 days post wounding, MCG-treated ischemic wounds displayed higher abundance of proliferating endothelial cells that formed mature vascular structures and increased blood flow to the wound. Fibroblast count was markedly higher in MCG-treated ischemic wound-edge tissue. In addition, MCG-treated wound-edge tissues displayed higher abundance of mature collagen with increased collagen type I?:?III deposition. Taken together, MCG helped mount a more robust inflammatory response that resolved in a timely manner, followed by an enhanced proliferative phase, angiogenic outcome, and postwound tissue remodeling. Findings of the current study warrant clinical testing of MCG in a setting of ischemic chronic wounds.
Project description:We developed the novel silk fibroin-based bilayered wound dressing for the treatment of partial thickness wounds. And it showed relevant characteristics and accelerated the healing of full-thickness wounds in a rat model. This study is the clinical evaluation of the bilayered wound dressing to confirm its safety and efficacy for the treatment of split-thickness skin donor sites. The safety test was performed using a patch model and no evidence of marked and severe cutaneous reactions was found. The efficacy test of the bilayered wound dressing was conducted on 23 patients with 30 split-thickness skin graft donor sites to evaluate healing time, pain score, skin barrier function, and systemic reaction in comparison to Bactigras. We found that the healing time of donor site wounds treated with the bilayered wound dressing (11 ± 6 days) was significantly faster than those treated with Bactigras (14 ± 6 days) (p = 10(-6)). The wound sites treated with the bilayered wound dressing showed significantly less pain and more rapid skin functional barrier recovery than those treated with Bactigras (p = 10(-5)). Therefore, these results confirmed the clinical safety and efficacy of the bilayered wound dressing for the treatment of split-thickness skin graft donor sites.
Project description:Developing effective therapies against chronic wound healing deficiencies is a global priority. Thus we evaluated the safety of two different doses of topically administered autologous APOSEC, the secretome of apoptotic peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs), in healthy male volunteers with artificial dermal wounds. Ten healthy men were enrolled in a single-center, randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled phase 1 trial. Two artificial wounds at the upper arm were generated using a 4-mm punch biopsy. Each participant was treated with both topically applied APOSEC and placebo in NuGel for 7 consecutive days. The volunteers were randomized into two groups: a low-dose group (A) receiving the supernatant of 12.5 × 106 PBMCs and a high-dose group (B) receiving an equivalent of 25 × 106 PBMCs resuspended in NuGel Hydrogel. Irradiated medium served as placebo. The primary outcome was the tolerability of the topical application of APOSEC. All adverse events were recorded until 17 days after the biopsy. Local tolerability assessment was measured on a 4-point scale. Secondary outcomes were wound closure and epithelization at day 7. No therapy-related serious adverse events occurred in any of the participants, and both low- and high-dose treatments were well tolerated. Wound closure was not affected by APOSEC therapy.