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4 years ago

NANOTECHNOLOGY IN THE FOOD CHAIN - Favv

NANOTECHNOLOGY IN THE FOOD CHAIN - Favv

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Mixed PEO/PAA brushes for the control of protein adsorption Marie Delcroix 1 , Wim Van Camp 2 , Filip Du Prez 2 & Christine Dupont-Gillain 1 1 Université catholique de Louvain, Institute of Condensed Matter and Nanosciences, Bio & Soft Matter, Croix du Sud 2/18, 1348 Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgium 2 Ghent University, Department of Organic Chemistry, Polymer Chemistry Research Group, Krijgslaan 281 S4-bis, 9000 Gent, Belgium E-mail: christine.dupont@uclouvain.be Introduction The creation of smart surfaces with designed functionalities is currently of growing interest in the field of biomaterials. Polymer material presents a large variety of properties which can be tuned to create such smart surfaces. Mixed polymer brushes are of particular interest since they offer the possibility to combine different properties on a same material. This study aims at creating surfaces showing tuneable properties with respect to protein adsorption, using the combination of a protein-repellent polymer and of a polymer which adopts different behaviours towards proteins depending on the environment. Brushes of poly(ethylene oxide) (PEO) are known to prevent protein adsorption. Brushes of poly(acrylic acid) (PAA), a weak polyelectrolyte, are able to swell or shrink according to the pH and the ionic strength (I) of the solution. Using an appropriate combination of these two parameters, mixed PEO/PAA brushes are expected to either repel proteins, or allow their immobilization. These smart surfaces have promising applications as food packaging (a modification of the packaging due to food degradation could inform visually the consumer) or as pipe coating in food industry (in order to immobilize some valuable products and to release them by changing the environmental conditions). Methods The adopted strategy is the “grafting to” approach with thiolfunctionalised polymers which self-assemble on gold surfaces. PEO-SH had a Mw of 2,000 and was provided by Polymer Source (Dorval, Quebec, Canada). PAA with a midchain disulfide bond PAA-S-S-PAA (Mn=6,500) was synthesized 127

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