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Reduction of protein adsorption on surfaces coated with Complex Coacercate Core Micelles

  • Brzozowska, A.M.
Publication Date
Jan 01, 2010
Wageningen University and Researchcenter Publications
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The structure and formation of Ionomer Complexes (ICs) consisting of linear polyelectrolytes (C3Ms) has been extensively studied in the past years. Recently, these structures were also considered for several applications. This thesis deals with the possible application of ICs as a surface coating suppressing protein adsorption independent of the properties of the native surface. To reach this goal it was crucial to understand the principles governing the adsorption and the stability of the IC layers on solid surfaces, as well as their interactions with proteins. Therefore, this research was limited to well defined model substrates: silica (model hydrophilic surface), polystyrene (model hydrophobic surface), and polysulfone (a surface mimicking polymeric membrane material), and model proteins: β-lactoglobulin, bovine serum albumin, fibrinogen, and lysozyme. The ultimate goal, however, was to apply the coating on surfaces of membranes used in water purification to suppress biofilm growth. We have observed that reduction of protein adsorption by coating formed by regular C3Ms is not satisfactory due to relatively low density of the polymer brushes formed on the coated surface. We increased the grafting density, and hence significantly improved the reduction of protein adsorption, by introducing grafted block and grafted copolymers into the micelles. In our work we discuss an influence of various factors, i.e. physical-chemical properties of the native surfaces, lengths of the charged blocks, distribution of the grafts along the backbone of the copolymer, salt concentration etc., on the performance of the formed coatings. In the final part we focus on the mechanical stability of the coatings formed with ICs, and discuss their applicability as a membrane surface coating.

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