Functional Nanogels as Platforms for Imparting Antibacterial, Antibiofilm, and Antiadhesion Activities to Stainless Steel



In this work, long-term antibacterial, antiadhesion, and antibiofilm activities are afforded to industrial stainless steel surfaces following a green and bio-inspired strategy. Starting from catechol bearing synthetic polymers, the film cross-linking and the grafting of active (bio)molecules are possible under environmentally friendly conditions (in aqueous media and at room temperature). A bio-inspired polyelectrolyte, a polycation-bearing catechol, is used as the film-anchoring polymer while a poly(methacrylamide)-bearing quinone groups serves as the cross-linking agent in combination with a polymer bearing primary amine groups. The amine/quinone reaction is exploited to prepare stable solutions of nanogels in water at room temperature that can be easily deposited to stainless steel. This coating provides quinone-functionalized surfaces that are then used to covalently anchor active (bio)molecules (antibiofilm enzyme and antiadhesion polymer) through thiol/quinone reactions.