Unraveling dominant surface physicochemistry to build antimicrobial peptide coatings with supramolecular amphiphiles

Zhou Ye, Alexandra C. Kobe, Ting Sang, Conrado Aparicio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


With the increasing threat from antibiotic-resistant bacteria, surface modification with antimicrobial peptides (AMP) has been promisingly explored for preventing bacterial infections. Little is known about the critical factors that govern AMP-surface interactions to obtain stable and active coatings. Here, we systematically monitored the adsorption of a designer amphipathic AMP, GL13K, on model surfaces. Self-assembly of the GL13K peptides formed supramolecular amphiphiles that highly adsorbed on negatively charged, polar hydroxyapatite-coated sensors. We further tuned surface charge and/or surface polarity with self-assembled monolayers (SAMs) on Au sensors and studied their interactions with adsorbed GL13K. We determined that the surface polarity of the SAM-coated sensors instead of their surface charge was the dominant factor governing AMP/substrate interactions via hydrogen bonding. Our findings will instruct the universal design of efficient self-assembled AMP coatings on biomaterials, biomedical devices and/or natural tissues.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)20767-20775
Number of pages9
Issue number40
StatePublished - Oct 28 2020

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors acknowledge Dr Bhaskar Velamakanni, 3 M Oral Care, for providing access to the QCM-D equipment and Mr Ryan Moylan for conducting preliminary QCM-D tests. A. C. K. acknowledges support from the UMSOD Summer Fellowship program and the Dentistry Student Research Campaign of the University of Minnesota School of Dentistry. The authors acknowledge Mr Tristen Nies for language editing of this manuscript. Parts of this work were carried out in the University of Minneosta I.T. Characterization Facility, which receives partial support from NSF through the MRSEC program. This study was supported by the National Institute for Dental and Craniofacial Research of the National Institutes of Health [grant number R01DE026117 to C. A.], the National Institutes of Health’s National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences [Translational Research Development Program-TRDP award to Z. Y. from grant UL1TR002494], the Jiangxi Provincial Department of Science and Technology, China [grant number 20192BBG70022 to T.S.] and the Hundred People Voyage Project of Jiangxi Association for Science and Technology [grant number (2017) 91 to T. S.]. The funding bodies had no role in study design, analysis, and interpretation of data; in the writing of the report; and in the decision to submit the article for publication. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 The Royal Society of Chemistry.

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Journal Article


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