Topic Progress:

Topic Five: Enzyme Alginogel

Wound care dressings are enzyme alginogel, comprise of hydrated alginate polymers in a polyethylene glycol (PEG), matrix embedded with a currently patented antimicrobial enzymatic complex. The antimicrobial enzymes are GLG glucose oxidase combined with lactoperoxidase, which is stabilised by guaiacol (White, 2014; Beele et al., 2012). These naturally occurring enzymes are found in saliva and milk and are important in the innate immune system. They have a good biocompatibility with a limited likelihood of allergy. (Beele et al., 2012)

By working together, the two enzymes, lactoperoxidase and glucose oxidase, form free radicals via hydrogen peroxide, which destroys the cell walls of adsorbed bacteria in a manner similar to our innate white cell defences (White, 2014). As this is a selective process, only the absorbed bacteria are destroyed and not the essential regenerating cells of the healing wound. Currently, enzyme alginogel can be found in two formats, one for dry wounds and the other to accommodate exuding wounds. Both require a secondary dressing.