Kogermann, Karin

Kogermann, Karin
Institute of Pharmacy, University of Tartu, Nooruse 1, 50411 Tartu, Estonia

Biography: 
Dr. K. Kogermann is a pharmacist specialized in pharmaceutical technology and physical pharmacy. She received her master degree at the University of Tartu (UT). She completed her PhD at the University of Helsinki, Finland in 2008 entitled: „Understanding solid-state transformations during dehydration: new insights using vibrational spectroscopy and multivariate modeling“. After the defense she continued her scientific career at the UT. In 2012 she received a Mobilitas Postdoctoral Research Fellow grant and continued her studies in the field of biotechnology at the Institute of Technology, Antibiotics Laboratory (UT). The main aim of her postdoctoral research was to develop in vitro and in vivo infection models in mice and understand the action mechanisms of antibiotics. Currently she is working as an Associate Professor and senior researcher at the Institute of Pharmacy.

K. Kogermann has been acting as a grant holder/principal investigator in several Estonian Science Foundation Projects. Her research interests include the physical pharmacy and solid state analysis-related as well as infection and antibacterial therapy-related topics. Her present research is focused on combining these two branches and develop antimicrobial nanofibrous dressings as controlled drug delivery systems for effective wound care and investigation of their performance. The main goal is to understand the effects of the solid-state, mechanical and technological properties on the bioactivity of wound dressings. Hence the drug release, antimicrobial activity, and biofilm formation studies are the main part of the study.

She has (co-)authored 24 original peer-reviews research publications and more than 100 conference proceedings. She has supervised 3 PhD students and currently is supervising 5 PhD students. K. Kogermann is acting as an expert at the European Pharmacopoeia Commission Expert Group G12, Estonian State Agency of Medicine and is a chairman of the Estonian Academical Society.

Lecture:
Design and Development of Antimicrobial Fibrous Dressings for Advanced Wound Care

Chronic wound infections are responsible for considerable morbidity and increased healthcare costs. Recently, it has been recognised that biofilm formation is one of the main problems associated with chronic wounds and persistent infections causing delayed healing. The current therapies to treat bacterial infection in the wound rely mostly on the systemic administration of antibiotics, but the related major concerns are the risk of toxicity during treatment and insufficiently low local drug levels in the wound1. Alternative topical pharmaceutical formulations however require frequent application and are ineffective in the presence of wound exudate or biofilm. Therefore, there is a need to find better treatment options for infected wounds.

We have started to develop antimicrobial-loaded electrospun dressings for local wound care. Electrospun fibers have several characteristics that favour their use in such application including (i) ability to mimic the fibrillar structure of natural extracellular matrix, (ii) the high surface area to volume ratio, (iii) interconnecting porous structure with high permeability, and (iv) the ability to incorporate drugs and/or growth factors2. The talk will shortly cover the reasons for wound infection development and its current treatment options. Then electrospinning (ES) state-of-the-art will be reviewed. We show that the ES and its recent advances (e.g. ultrasound-enhanced ES, USES) enable to design and prepare various antimicrobial medicated fibrous dressings. Deep solid state analysis, texture analysis, in vitro biofilm/cytotoxicity and drug release tests enable to understand the physicochemical and mechanical properties as well as antimicrobial/antibiofilm efficiency and safety of the developed mats. This knowledge is important for the development of novel antimicrobial fibrous dressings intended for advanced wound care.

References:

1Bowler PG, Duerden BI, Armstrong DG. Clin. Microbiol. Rev. 14:244–69 (2001);
2Choi JS, Kim HS, Yoo HS. Drug Deliv. Transl. Res. 5:137–45 (2013).