biotextiles” are structures composed of textile fibers designed for use in specific biological environments where their performance depends on biocompatibility and biostability with cells and biological fluids. Biotextiles include implantible devices such as surgical sutures, hernia repair fabrics, arterial grafts, artificial skin and parts of artificial hearts. They were first created 30 years ago by a professor in NC State’s College of Textiles. Medical textiles are a broader group wich also include bandages, wound dressings, hospital linnen, preventive clothing etc. Antiseptic biotextiles are textiles used in fighting against cutaneous bacterial proliferation. Zeolite and triclosan are at the present time the most used molecules. This original property allows to fight the development of bad smells, bacterial proliferation in the diabetic foot etc.
In the new paradigm of tissue engineering, professionals are trying to develop new textiles so that the body can form new tissue around these devices so it’s not relying solely on synthetic foreign implanted material. One of Dr. Martin King's graduate students, Jessica Gluck, has demonstrated that viable and functioning liver cells can be grown on textile scaffolds.