Methacrylate-ended polypeptides and polypeptoids for antimicrobial and antifouling coatings
Methacrylate-ended polypeptides/polypeptoids were successfully synthesized via ring-opening polymerization (ROP) of N-carboxyanhydrides (NCA). These oligomers were further initiated under ultraviolet (UV) irradiation by a polydopamine (pDA) layer which is attachable to the surface of virtually all materials to generate a polymer brush coating. This brush-like polymer coating comprising cationic antimicrobial polypeptides (MePpep) and antifouling polysarcosine (MePsar) exhibited effective antimicrobial activity against four pathogens (Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and Candida albicans), as well as antifouling activity in the resistance to protein and platelet adhesion, and thus prevented biofilm formation for up to 7 days. An in vitro cytotoxicity study showed that this coating is biocompatible with mouse fibroblast (L929) cells. More importantly, this coating exhibited significant anti-infectivity in vivo. This dual-functional polymer brush coating can be immobilized on the surface of multiple categories of materials through the mussel-inspired pDA coating, and thus should be widely applicable for combating infection in many classes of bio-medical materials.