This is the webpage for our Marie Skłodowska Curie Individual Fellowship project PHOTO-IASIS with title “Nanoengineered coatings for visible-light photocatalytic disinfection of medical devices”.

This project with our Marie Skłodowska Curie fellow Dr. Eleni Bletsa aims to develop light-responsive surfaces on medical devices against biofilm infections.

OBJECTIVE: Catheter-associated infections are characterized by the formation of a bacterial biofilm on their surface and are a major clinical problem today with huge socioeconomic implications. As a result, apart from longer hospital admissions that dramatically increase healthcare costs, in order to fight these infections increased antibiotic drug doses are used. This approach places selective pressure on pathogens and, especially in nosocomial settings, facilitates the emergence of antimicrobial resistant bacteria that are more difficult, if at all possible, to treat. In fact, catheter-associated infections by antimicrobial resistant bacteria are potentially lethal, especially in patients with compromised immune system (cancer, HIV patients). So, there is an urgent societal and clinical need to reduce such infections. The target of this project is to re-engineer catheters that exhibit anti-biofilm properties due to the presence of an antimicrobial nanocoating. This coating will consist of a photo-active material that destroys the biofilm upon visible light irradiation. The light will be delivered on the catheter surface by an optical fiber through the catheter opening. This will enable biofilm destruction with a simple push of a button. The developed catheter here will revolutionize this field by reducing such catheter-associated infections, minimizing the emergence of drug resistant bacteria and improving the public health worldwide. The supervisor’s unique expertise in nanomaterial synthesis using flame spray pyrolysis (FSP), and in applying the resulting nanoparticles to specific biomedical applications combined with that of the applicant’s in nanoparticles and photocatalysis reassures a mutual benefit between the applicant and the host institute and enhances the feasibility of this proposal.


Conference presentations

-“Responsive nanomaterials against infections”, 15th Oncology Conference with title “Enhancing oncologist collaboration with other specialties”, Athens, Greece (virtual) (3/12/2021).

-“Engineering responsive nanoparticles and devices against biofilm infections”, European Foundation for Clinical Nanomedicine (CLINAM), Basel, Switzerland (virtual) (27/10/2020).

-“Nanoparticles and nano-enabled devices against biofilms”, KI Infection Retreat 2020 (virtual), (28/8/2020).

– Engineering responsive nanoparticles and devices against infections”, Tsinghua University Health and Engineering Forum, Beijing, China (virtual) (14/1/2022).

– “Flame nanoparticle and device engineering for biomedicine”, National Hellenic Research Foundation, Athens, Greece (virtual) (17/6/2021).