The aim of this study is preparation and characterization of alginate/chitosan sponges including a model antibiotic (i.e., ciprofloxacin) to use in wound and/or burn treatment. Sponges were prepared firstly by the gelation of sodium alginate followed by lyophilization, crosslinking with calcium chloride, and finally coating with chitosan. Sponges were characterized with respect to morphology, water uptake, in vitro drug release behavior, and antimicrobial activity. Investigated and evaluated parameters in all of these studies were selected as the concentration of calcium chloride, alginate viscosity, drug content, and molecular weight of chitosan. Drug release and water uptake were found to be greatly influenced by these parameters. Water uptake and drug release rate were decreased by increasing the crosslinking density, chitosan molecular weight, and alginate viscosity. In the antimicrobial tests, it was obtained that the antimicrobial activity is directly proportional with the release rates and water uptake. Morphological studies showed a highly porous structure with interconnected pores. (c) 2006 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.