Electrochemically deposited gentamicin-loaded calcium phosphate coatings for bone tissue integration

Lina Altomare, Livia Visai, Nora Bloise, Carla Renata Arciola, Lorenzo Ulivi, Gabriele Candiani, Alberto Cigada, Roberto Chiesa, Luigi De Nardo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: Despite improvements in operative environment and surgical techniques, post-operative infections remain one of the most devastating complications in total joint replacement prostheses. Several efforts have been made to modify the surface of materials in order to prevent bacterial adhesion and colonization. Here, we show a one-pot electrochemical surface modification process for co-deposition of calcium phosphate and gentamicin, with the aim of triggering specific biological responses and imparting antibacterial properties on titanium alloy prostheses. Methods: Gentamicin-loaded calcium phosphate coatings were deposited on Ti specimens via cathodic polarization in an electrochemical bath containing different amounts of the antibiotic salt (1-10 mg mL-1). Coatings were evaluated in terms of chemico-physical properties, via SEM/EDX, XRD, and ICP analysis, and antibacterial activity, via agar disc diffusion test on Staphylococcus aureus 8325-4 and Staphylococcus aureus SA113. Results: An effective incorporation of gentamicin was achieved without any major effect on the morphology and structure. Morphology resulted in a typical plate-like brushite structure, confirmed by chemical composition and crystallographic structure. Gentamicin-loaded coatings showed an antibacterial efficacy on both staphlococcal strains, with a dose-dependent activity. Conclusions: Electrochemical technology can be advantageously exploited in order to obtain coatings for bone-contact prostheses with tailored antibacterial properties.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)876-883
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Artificial Organs
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 2012


  • Antibacterial properties
  • Biomaterial surface modifications
  • Calcium phosphate coatings
  • Electrochemical deposition
  • Gentamicin sulfate

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomaterials
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Bioengineering
  • Medicine (miscellaneous)


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