Volume 29, Issue 4, April 2006, Pages 434-442
Antibacterial activity of zinc modified titanium oxide surface
Titanium-based implants are successfully used for various biomedical applications. However, in some cases, e.g. in dental implants, failures due to bacterial colonization are reported. Surface modification is a commonly proposed strategy to prevent infections. In this work, titanium oxide, naturally occurring on the surface of titanium, was modified by promoting the formation of a mixed titanium and zinc oxide, on the basis of the idea that zinc oxide on titanium surface may act as the zinc oxide used in pharmaceutical formulation for its lenitive and antibacterial effects. The present work shows that it is possible to form a mixed titanium and zinc oxide on titanium surfaces, as shown by Scanning Electron Microscopy and XPS analysis. To this end titanium was preactivated by UV on crystalline titanium oxide, both in the anatase form or in the co-presence of anatase and rutile. By performing antibacterial assays, we provide evidence of a significant reduction in the viability of five streptococcal oral strains on titanium oxide surfaces modified with zinc. In conclusion, this type of chemical modification of titanium oxide surfaces with zinc might be considered a new way to reduce the risk of bacterial colonization, increasing the lifetime of dental system applications.