Superlow Fouling Materials and Surfaces Comprising Molecular-Scale Mixed Charged Species

Introduction Superlow fouling materials and surfaces that can resist protein adsorption, cell adhesion, biofilm formation, and microorganism settlement are needed for the improvement of a variety of health-related products. Ideallly, any synthetic surface that comes into contact with body fluids or cells would be superlow fouling. Until now, only a very small number of materials were both biocompatible and superlow fouling. Technology description Researchers at the University of Washington have developed new methods for making superlow fouling materials and surfaces. It was previously known that zwitterionic materials had low fouling properties. UW Researchers have discovered that any material comprised of molecular-scale mixed-charge species with balanced charge can achieve superlow fouling properties. They have also developed methods for making polymers and hydrogels from combinations of charged species including amino acids. Business opportunity This invention will be of interest to the medical device and medical supply industries. Also, any consumer product where biological fouling is a problem could be improved by using a mixed-charge coating. Intellectual property position The UW has a patent pending on this technology.

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