Binary Polymer Brush Patterns from Facile Initiator-Stickiness for Cell Culturing
We report a new initiator-stickiness method to fabricate micropatterned binary polymer brush surfaces, which are ideal platforms for studying cell adhesion behavior. The atom transfer radical polymerization (ATRP) initiator, ω-mercaptoundecyl bromoisobutyrate (MUDBr), is found to adsorb on several hosting polymer brushes including poly [oligo (ethylene glycol) methyl ether methacrylate] (POEGMA), poly (2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate) (PHEMA) and poly (glycidyl methacrylate) (PGMA) brushes. Based on the initiator-stickiness ability, micropatterned initiator molecules are printed onto a first layer of homogenous hosting polymer brush via microcontact printing (μCP), and then vertically a patterned second-layer of polymer brushes are grown from the initiator areas. With this simple, fast and additive method, we demonstrate the fabrication of various binary polymer brushes, and show their applications for patterning cell microarrays and controlling the cell orientation. This new approach to generating binary polymer brushes shows great potential for the manipulation of interfacial phenomena in facilitating a range amount of applications from semiconductor, lubrication to fundamental cell biology study.
- This article is part of the themed collection: Nanolithography of biointerfaces