Six-month study shows no biofilm formation on zwitterionic polyurethanes
Biofilms have been a long-standing challenge for healthcare, water transport, and many other industries. They lead to bacterial growth and infections in animals, food products, and humans. In a new study, a multifunctional carboxybetaine precursor was designed and introduced into polyurethane.
The carboxybetaine precursors undergo rapid, self-catalysed hydrolysis at the water/material interface and provide critical anti-fouling properties that lead to undetectable bacterial attachment and zero biofilm formation after six months of constant exposure to Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Staphylococcus epidermidis under the static condition in a nutrient-rich medium.
Anti-biofilm properties and tunable mechanical properties
According to the researchers, this zwitterionic polyurethane is the first material to demonstrate both critical anti-biofilm properties and tunable mechanical properties. This approach of designing ‘multitasking materials’ is supposed to be useful for the development of next generation anti-fouling materials for a variety of applications.
The study has been published in Chemical Science, Issue 18, 2020.