Silk Protein Bioresorbable, Drug-Eluting Ear Tubes: Proof-of-Concept

Sarah A. Bradner, Deepa Galaiya, Nikhila Raol, David L. Kaplan, Chistopher J. Hartnick

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Otitis media with effusion (OEM) is a common pediatric pathology treated with topical fluoroquinolones (ear drops) and tympanoplasty tube, also referred to as ear tube, implantation for middle ear drainage. Commercially available ear tubes are fabricated using poly (lactic-co-glycolic acid) synthetic materials that are associated with long-complications due to premature extrusion. Resorbable materials have emerged as desirable alternatives to reduce extrusion-related complications, but often limited by fast resorption rates. Therefore, resorbable tubes with long-term functional integrity are required for future clinical translation. In this communication, a proof-of-concept study is reported on a bioresorbable and drug-eluting silk ear tube device. Preliminary in vitro assessments reveal time-dependent drug elution and antimicrobial properties, while maintaining long-term functional integrity in vivo. This report provides evidence of a silk ear tube with potential for future clinical translation and OEM treatment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number1801409
JournalAdvanced Healthcare Materials
Issue number3
StatePublished - Feb 7 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • OEM
  • bioresorbable
  • drug-eluting
  • silk fibroin
  • tympanoplasty tubes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomaterials
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Pharmaceutical Science


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