Method: The a-C:Ag films were deposited by dual co-sputtering using graphite and silver targets under an argon plasma, varying the power applied to the Ag target. Microstructure and composition of the a-C:Ag films was characterized by XRD, EDS, AFM, and SEM. Biocompatibility of a-C:Ag samples was evaluated using osteoblast-like cells (MG63). The anti-bacterial effect of the samples were tested at 24 hours by counting the number of colony forming units and the biofilm formation was observed by SEM and fluorescence microscopy during incubation periods of 1, 3 and 5 days using Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus aureus and Pseudomonas aeruginosa.
Result: Biological tests showed that a-C:Ag films containing up to 6 at% Ag supported osteoblast proliferation and osteogenic local factor production, demonstrating that the biocompatability and osteoinduction properties of the surfaces were not modified by the addition of small percentages of silver. Bacteria attachment was reduced on a-C:Ag samples with Ag concentrations ranging from 0-10 at% in comparison to films without silver.
Conclusion: The a-C:Ag films inhibit bacterial attachment and biofilm formation. In addition, a-C:Ag coatings support osteoblast maturation, demonstrating that they are suitable for use on biomedical devices.
Keywords: Antimicrobials, Biocompatibility, Implants and Surfaces
See more of: Implantology Research