A bilayer membrane (GKU) with a commercial polyurethane wound dressing as an outer layer and electrospun gelatin/keratin nanofibrous mat as an inner layer was fabricated as a novel wound dressing. Scanning electron micrographs showed that gelatin/keratin nanofibers had a uniform morphology and bead-free structure with average fiber diameter of 160.4 nm. 3-(4,5-Dimethylthiazolyl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide assay using L929 fibroblast cells indicated that the residues released from the gelatin/keratin composite nanofibrous mat accelerated cell proliferation. Cell attachment experiments revealed that adhered cells spread better and migrated deeper into the gelatin/keratin nanofibrous mat than that into the gelatin nanofibrous mat. In animal studies, compared with the bilayer membrane without keratin, gauze and commercial wound dressing, Comfeel®, GKU membrane gave much more number of blood vessels and a greater reduction in wound area at 4 days, and better wound repair at 14 days with a thicker epidermis and larger number of newly formed hair follicles. GKU membrane, thus, could be a good candidate for wound dressing applications.
Materials Science & Engineering C-Materials for Biological Applications