Honors Theses and Capstones


Bactericidal Surface that Enhances Integration of Biomaterials with Tissue

Date of Award

Spring 2015

Project Type

Senior Honors Thesis

College or School



Chemical Engineering

Program or Major

Chemical Engineering

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science

First Advisor

Kyung Jae Jeong


Implants for years have been a vital tool in the medical field, but these implants often integrate poorly with the recipient tissue which can eventually lead to the implant failure. Bacterial infection is another major concern associated with the implantation procedures. Implant failure requires the removal surgery which is costly and invasive. In order to address this important issue, we propose a multifunctional surface chemistry that enables the implant surface to integrate with the surrounding tissue and at the same time suppresses bacterial growth. The main feature of this surface chemistry is the presence of nanopatterns of cell adhesive ligands (RGD peptide) on top of the bactericidal coating. The silane chemistry was used to coat the glass substrate with the quaternary amine-based antibacterial molecules. Nanopatterns were created by the adsorption of gold nanoparticles, onto which cell adhesive RGD peptides were immobilized. The surface chemistry was characterized by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and field-emission scanning electron microscopy (FE-SEM). The antibacterial property of the surface was tested by culture E.coli on the surface and measuring its proliferation. Human mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) were cultured on the surfaces, and the initial adhesion and the long term differentiation into osteoblasts (bone-forming cells) were observed. In order to assess the potential adverse innate immune response, the secretion of proinflammatory cytokines by the surface adhered cells was also measured.These surfaces have the potential to advance the use of medical implants by improving implant integration and reducing the risk of bacterial infection associated with the implantation procedures.

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