Melt-extrusion 3D printing of resorbable levofloxacin-loaded meshes: Emerging strategy for urogynaecological applications

Francesca Corduas, Essyrose Mathew, Ruairi Mc Glynn, Davide Mariotti, Dimitrios A. Lamprou, Elena Mancuso

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)
4 Downloads (Pure)


Current surgical strategies for the treatment of pelvic floor dysfunctions involve the placement of a polypropylene mesh into the pelvic cavity. However, polypropylene meshes have proven to have inadequate mechanical properties and have been associated to the arising of severe complications, such as infections. Furthermore, currently employed manufacturing strategies are unable to produce compliant and customisable devices. In this work, polycaprolactone has been used to produce resorbable levofloxacin-loaded meshes in two different designs (90° and 45°) via melt-extrusion 3D printing. Drug-loaded meshes were produced using a levofloxacin concentration of 0.5% w/w. Drug loaded meshes were successfully produced with highly reproducible mechanical and physico-chemical properties. Tensile test results showed that drug-loaded 45° meshes possessed a mechanical behaviour close to that of the vaginal tissue (E ≃ 8.32 ± 1.85 MPa), even after 4 weeks of accelerated degradation. Meshes released 80% of the loaded levofloxacin in the first 3 days and were capable of producing an inhibitory effect against S. Aureus and E. coli bacterial strains with an inhibition zone equal to 12.8 ± 0.45 mm and 15.8 ± 0.45 mm respectively. Thus, the strategy adopted in this work holds great promise for the manufacturing of custom-made surgical meshes with antibacterial properties.

Original languageEnglish
Article number112523
Pages (from-to)1-13
Number of pages13
JournalMaterials Science and Engineering: C
Early online date26 Oct 2021
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 31 Dec 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021


  • Polypropylenes
  • Stress urinary incontinence
  • Pelvic Organ Prolapse
  • Pelvic organ prolapse
  • Surgical Mesh
  • Humans
  • Antibacterial devices
  • Staphylococcus aureus
  • Drug delivery
  • Escherichia coli
  • Printing, Three-Dimensional
  • Levofloxacin
  • Female
  • 3D printing


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