Preventing Biofilm Formation and Encrustation on Urinary Implants: (Bio)molecular and Physical Research Approaches
Abou-Hassan A., Barros A., Buchholz N., CARUGO D., Clavica F., Mergulhao F., Zheng S.
Stents and catheters are used to facilitate urine drainage within the urinary system. When such sterile implants are inserted into the urinary tract, ions, macromolecules and bacteria from urine, blood or underlying tissues accumulate on their surface. We presented a brief but comprehensive overview of future research strategies in the prevention of urinary device encrustation with an emphasis on biodegradability, molecular, microbiological and physical research approaches. The large and strongly associated field of stent coatings and tissue engineering is outlined elsewhere in this book. There is still plenty of room for future investigations in the fields of material science, surface science, and biomedical engineering to improve and create the most effective urinary implants. In an era where material science, robotics and artificial intelligence have undergone great progress, futuristic ideas may become a reality. These ideas include the creation of multifunctional programmable intelligent urinary implants (core and surface) capable to adapt to the complex biological and physiological environment through sensing or by algorithms from artificial intelligence included in the implant. Urinary implants are at the crossroads of several scientific disciplines, and progress will only be achieved if scientists and physicians collaborate using basic and applied scientific approaches.