Antibacterial surfaces based on polymer brushes: Investigation on the influence of brush properties on antimicrobial peptide immobilization and antimicrobial activity

Guangzheng Gao, Kai Yu, Jason Kindrachuk, Donald E. Brooks, Robert E.W. Hancock, Jayachandran N. Kizhakkedathu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

132 Citations (Scopus)


Primary amine containing copolymer, poly(N,N-dimethylacrylamide-co-N-(3- aminopropyl)methacrylamide hydrochloride) (poly(DMA-co-APMA)), brushes were synthesized on Ti surface by surface-initiated atom transfer radical polymerization (SI-ATRP) in aqueous conditions. A series of poly(DMA-co-APMA) copolymer brushes on titanium (Ti) surface with different molecular weights, thicknesses, compositions, and graft densities were synthesized by changing the SI-ATRP reaction conditions. Cysteine-functionalized cationic antimicrobial peptide Tet213 (KRWWKWWRRC) was conjugated to the copolymers brushes using a maleimide-thiol addition reaction after initial modification of the grafted chains using 3-maleimidopropionic acid N-hydroxysuccinimide ester. The modified surfaces were characterized by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), water contact angle measurements, attenuated total reflectance Fourier transform infrared (ATR-FTIR) spectroscopy, atomic force microscopy (AFM), and ellipsometry analysis. The conjugation of the Tet213 onto brushes strongly depended on graft density of the brushes at different copolymer brush compositions. The peptide density (peptides/nm 2) on the surface varied with the initial composition of the copolymer brushes. Higher graft density of the brushes generated high peptide density (pepetide/nm 2) and lower number of peptides/polymer chain and vice versa. The peptide density and graft density of the chains on surface greatly influenced the antimicrobial activity of peptide grafted polymer brushes against Pseudomonas aeruginosa.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3715-3727
Number of pages13
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished or Issued - 10 Oct 2011
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • Biomaterials
  • Polymers and Plastics
  • Materials Chemistry

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