The study was to evaluate the characteristics of a chitosan membrane cross-linked with a naturally-occurring cross-linking reagent, genipin. This newly-developed genipin-cross-linked chitosan membrane may be used as an implantable drug-delivery system. The chitosan membrane without cross-linking (fresh) and the glutaraldehyde-cross-linked chitosan membrane were used as controls. The characteristics of test chitosan membranes evaluated were their cross-linking degree, swelling ratio, mechanical properties, antimicrobial activity, cytotoxicity, and degradability. It was found that cross-linking of chitosan membrane using genipin increased its ultimate tensile strength but significantly reduced its strain-at-fracture and swelling ratio. There was no significant difference in antimicrobial activity between the genipin-cross-linked chitosan membrane and its fresh counterpart. Additionally, the results showed that the genipin-cross-linked chitosan membrane had a significantly less cytotoxicity and a slower degradation rate compared to the glutaraldehyde-cross-linked membrane. These results suggested that the genipin-cross-linked chitosan membrane may be a promising carrier for fabricating an implantable drug-delivery system. The drug-release characteristics of the genipin-cross-linked chitosan membrane are currently under investigation.
ASJC Scopus subject areas