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Silver nanoparticles are gaining importance as an antimicrobial agent in wound dressings. Chitin is a biopolymer envisioned to promote rapid dermal regeneration and accelerate wound healing. This study was focused on the evaluation of chitin membranes containing silver nanoparticles for use as an antimicrobial wound dressing. Silver nanoparticles were synthesised by gamma irradiation at doses of 50 kGy in the presence of sodium alginate as stabiliser. The UV–Vis absorption spectra of nanoparticles exhibited an absorption band at 415–420 nm, which is the typical plasmon resonance band of silver nanoparticles. The peaks in the X-ray diffraction (XRD) pattern are in agreement with the standard values of the face-centred cubic silver. Transmission electron microscopy (TEM) images indicate silver nanoparticles with spherical morphology and small particle size in the range of 3–13 nm. In vitro antimicrobial tests were performed using Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Staphylococcus aureus to determine the antimicrobial efficiency of the chitin membranes containing 30, 50, 70 and 100 ppm nanosilver. No viable counts for P. aeruginosa were detected with 70 ppm silver nanoparticles dressing after 1-hour exposure. A 2-log reduction in viable cell count was observed for S. aureus after 1 hour and a 4-log reduction after 6 hours with 100 ppm nanosilver chitin membranes. This study demonstrates the antimicrobial capability of chitin membranes containing silver nanoparticles. The chitin membranes with 100 ppm nanosilver showed promising antimicrobial activity against common wound pathogens.