Header logo is pi

Hydrophobic pinning with copper nanowhiskers leads to bactericidal properties




The considerable morbidity associated with hospitalized patients and clinics in developed countries due to biofilm formation on biomedical implants and surgical instruments is a heavy economic burden. An alternative to chemically treated surfaces for bactericidal activity started emerging from micro/nanoscale topographical cues in the last decade. Here, we demonstrate a putative antibacterial surface using copper nanowhiskers deposited by molecular beam epitaxy. Furthermore, the control of biological response is based on hydrophobic pinning of water droplets in the Wenzel regime, causing mechanical injury and cell death. Scanning electron microscopy images revealed the details of the surface morphology and non-contact mode laser scanning of the surface revealed the microtopography-associated quantitative parameters. Introducing the bacterial culture over nanowhiskers produces mechanical injury to cells, leading to a reduction in cell density over time due to local pinning of culture medium to whisker surfaces. Extended culture to 72 hours to observe biofilm formation revealed biofilm inhibition with scattered microcolonies and significantly reduced biovolume on nanowhiskers. Therefore, surfaces patterned with copper nanowhiskers can serve as potential antibiofilm surfaces. The topography-based antibacterial surfaces introduce a novel prospect in developing mechanoresponsive nanobiomaterials to reduce the risk of medical device biofilm-associated infections, contrary to chemical leaching of copper as a traditional bactericidal agent.

Author(s): Singh, Ajay Vikram and Baylan, Semanur and Park, Byung-Wook and Richter, Gunther and Sitti, Metin
Journal: PloS One
Volume: 12
Number (issue): 4
Pages: e0175428
Year: 2017
Month: April
Day: 11
Publisher: Public Library of Science

Department(s): Physical Intelligence
Bibtex Type: Article (article)

URL: https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0175428


  title = {Hydrophobic pinning with copper nanowhiskers leads to bactericidal properties},
  author = {Singh, Ajay Vikram and Baylan, Semanur and Park, Byung-Wook and Richter, Gunther and Sitti, Metin},
  journal = {PloS One},
  volume = {12},
  number = {4},
  pages = {e0175428},
  publisher = {Public Library of Science},
  month = apr,
  year = {2017},
  url = {https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0175428},
  month_numeric = {4}