Complex wounds are a global health problem with significant impact on the health care economy. In developed countries alone, they impact the quality of life of more than 2% of total population. Complex wounds, including chronic wounds or major burns, are highly susceptible to microbial infection and biofilm formation, and difficult to treat. Moreover, silver is a widely used metal in antimicrobial products to treat wound infections. However, silver-based products are expensive, and show several drawbacks due to costs, as well as environmental and safety concerns.
The NABIHEAL project will develop multifunctional biomaterials, from proof-of-concept (TRL 3) to the preclinical regulatory stage (TRL 5), to improve wound management. The resulting biomaterials will enable affordable treatment of wound infections or prevention of complications during all phases of the wound healing process.
In the short and medium term, NABIHEAL will develop at least two innovative multifunctional wound-healing biomaterials, using affordable EU-based manufacturing technologies. In the long term, NABIHEAL could become a game-changing alternative to silver in wound-healing dressings.
A consortium comprising 5 SMEs and 9 academic institutions, with expertise in wound-healing product development, evaluation and commercialization, nanotechnology, safety, and regulatory affairs, will join forces to address these ambitious objectives.