Currently, implants are utilized clinically for bone transplant procedures. However, if infectious osteomyelitis occurs at implant sites, removal of bacteria can be challenging. Moreover, altered blood flow at peri-implant infectious sites can create an anaerobic environment, making it more difficult to treat infection with antibiotics. Thus, it would be beneficial if implants could be modified to exhibit antibacterial activity, even in anaerobic conditions. Here, we show antibacterial activity of silver ions coated on titanium rods, even against the anaerobic bacteria Porphyromonas gingivalis (P. gingivalis), both in vitro and in vivo. Specifically, we implanted silver-coated or control uncoated titanium rods along with P. gingivalis in mouse femoral bone BM cavities and observed significantly inhibited P. gingivalis infection with silver-coated compared with non-coated rods, based on in vivo bio-imaging. Osteonecrosis by infectious osteomyelitis and elevation of the inflammatory factors C-reactive protein and IL-6 promoted by P. gingivalis s were also significantly reduced in the presence of silver-coated rods. Overall, our study indicates that silver ion coating of an implant represents a therapeutic option to prevent associated infection, even in anaerobic conditions or against anaerobic bacteria.
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