Ions of silver (Ag+) are toxic to microorganisms, while metallic silver is inert in the presence of human tissues. Colloidal silver has been reported to show strong bactericidal activity on single species bacteria in suspension. Bacteria in biofilms have much higher resistance against antimicrobial agents than those in planktonic form, which makes infections more difficult to control.
The pathogenic microorganisms cause significant concerns in hospitals and food storage all over the world. Currently antibiotics such as vancomycin, colistin and gentamicin are used to treat bacterial infections; however, there has been an alarming rise in the numbers of multi-drug resistant (MDR) bacteria that are resistant to most antibiotics.
The growing problem of multi-drug resistant bacteria reduces the efficacy of antibacterial agents requiring alternative solutions to be developed. Some metal ions are known to provide antimicrobial effects and have previously been shown to be effective on open wounds and injured skin where uncontrolled micro-organism growth can delay the normal process of wound healing. An effective antibacterial agent is required to improve the wound healing process in order to avoid open wound complications for patients.