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Inulin Nano-fibers with Prebiotic and Antibacterial Activity

Technology #nv187092014

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Wala Wahbi, Masters Student
Wael Mamdouh, Professor of Chemistry,
Rania Siam, Professor of Biology
Managed By
Ahmed Ellaithy
Director, Technology Transfer +20226153112
Ingy Darwish
Licensing Officer +20226153130
Patent Protection

PCT Patent Application PCT/US2015/062839


Electrospun Inulin Nano-fibers with Prebiotic and Antibacterial activity. These novel nanofibers can be used in treating various types of bacterial infections in wound dressing applications and digestive disorders. Other applications include Surface Nano-coatings in hospitals, sterile areas and pharmaceutical facilities.


Bacterial infection is a major cause of morbidity and mortality especially in developing countries. Infections arising from surgical wounds are the most common type of hospital-acquired infections. This is attributed to the low efficiency of conventional dressings, which don’t act as good barriers against bacteria.

Bacterial infections are also associated with medical implants such as dental, orthopedic and breast implants. Such infections result from bacteria attaching to and proliferating on the implant surface where they can develop into biofilms, thus act as a reservoir. Such contamination can result in resistant chronic infection and tissue necrosis. Implant infections are extremely resistant to antibiotics and host defenses and frequently persist until the implant is removed. This may force patients back to surgery for replacement, which is the standard therapy. Nanofibrous scaffolds can provide a reasonable solution for such complications.


Electrospun nanofibers were fabricated from natural inulin and were mixed with FDA approved synthetic polymer (PVA) in order to enhance inulin’s electrospinning capacity and strength.

The fabricated PVA/Inulin composite nanofibers exhibit potent antibacterial activity against E. coli and S. aureus bacteria, and also show potent prebiotic activity increasing the bacterial count of lactobacillus by 33.3% compared to bulk inulin solution.

These properties make this uniquely fabricated Nanofibrous composite a versatile tool due to its large surface areas per unit mass and advanced mechanical strength.

Used as a surface coating it can be used on implants, prior to insertion, in order to reduce associated bacterial infections from occurring and limit the need of systemic antibiotics for overall better patient compliance.The unique fibers can also be incorporated in various external wound dressings that can prevent bacteria from growing and act as a superior barrier to the external environment. Compressed pellets, tablets and capsules can also be synthesized from these nanofibers to be taken as prebiotics, providing a moderate dose compared to commercial supplements that usually cause bloating and gastrointestinal problems.


  • Enhanced prebiotic activities
  • Enhanced antibacterial activities
  • Cost effective
  • Minimal use of synthetic chemical substances
  • Fully biocompatible constituents
  • Minimal toxicity