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Author: Katarzyna Krukiewicz Published at: 22.09.2021 Last update: 22.09.2021

Electroactive polymers as coatings suitable for controlling the growth of bacterial biofilm

Biofilm formation is a common process in everyday life, with a high impact in almost every field of industry, with a particular significance in food and healthcare industries. Researchers agree that there is an urgent need to develop new methods of surface modification that will allow for a control over biofilm growth, for instance by making it harder for bacteria to attach to the surface, or by impeding their development.

The aim of our project was to design a novel type of coatings that can be used to control the growth of biofilm on different substrates, including the surface of medical implants. For the fabrication of bio-active coatings, we employed conducting polymers, which are atypical plastics, since they are able to conduct electrical current. Thanks to this feature, we were able to modify the physicochemical properties of developed coatings – it was enough to pass the electricity through a coating to change it into an antibacterial coating. To further enhance their biological activity, we loaded conducting polymer coatings with antibiotics, gold and silver particles, which were next released through an electrically-triggered mechanism. In this way, we fabricated electrically-modulated coatings with tailored antibacterial properties. Besides, we demonstrated that fabricated coatings are biocompatible with animal cells enhancing their growth and development, therefore, they meet a basic requirement for medical implant coatings.

Project title: Electroactive polymers as coatings suitable for controlling the growth of bacterial biofilm

Principal Investigator: dr hab. inż. Katarzyna Krukiewicz, prof. PŚ

Duration: 2017-2021

Funding: National Science Center, Poland (Sonata-2016/23/D/ST5/01306)


Selected publications:

Czerwińska-Główka D, Przystaś W, Zabłocka-Godlewska E, Student S, Cwalina B, Łapkowski M, Krukiewicz K: Electrically-responsive antimicrobial coatings based on a tetracycline-loaded poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene) matrix, Materials Science and Engineering: C 123 (2021) 112017

Czerwińska-Główka D., Przystaś W., Zabłocka-Godlewska E., Student S., Cwalina B., Łapkowski M., Krukiewicz K.: Bacterial surface colonization of sputter-coated platinum films, Materials 13 (2020) 2674

Czerwińska-Główka D., Krukiewicz K.: A journey in the complex interactions between electrochemistry and bacteriology: from electroactivity to electromodulation of bacterial biofilms, Bioelectrochemistry 131 (2020) 107401


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