“Clickable ” Polymer Brush Interfaces: Tailoring Monovalent to Multivalent Ligand Display for Protein Immobilization and Sensing

Facile and effective functionalization of the interface of polymer-coated surfaces allows one to dictate the interaction of the underlying material with the chemical and biological analytes in its environment. Herein, we outline a modular approach that would enable installing a variety of “clickable” handles onto the surface of polymer brushes, enabling facile conjugation of various ligands to obtain functional interfaces. To this end, hydrophilic anti-biofouling poly(ethylene glycol)-based polymer brushes are fabricated on glass-like silicon oxide surfaces using reversible addition-fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) polymerization. The dithioester group at the chain-end of the polymer brushes enabled the installation of azide, maleimide, and terminal alkene functional groups, using a post-polymerization radical exchange reaction with appropriately functionalized azo-containing molecules. Thus, modified polymer brushes underwent facile conjugation of alkyne or thiol-containing dyes and ligands using alkyne-azide cycloaddition, Michael addition, and radical thiol-ene conjugation, respectively. Moreover, we demonstrate that the radical exchange approach also enables the installation of multivalent motifs using dendritic azo-containing molecules. Terminal alkene groups containing dendrons amenable to functionalization with thiol-containing molecules using the radical thiol-ene reaction were installed at the interface and subsequently functionalized with mannose ligands to enable sensing of the Concanavalin A lectin.

Publication year: 2022
Authors: Degirmenci A. 1, Yeter Bas G. 1, Sanyal R. 1 2, Sanyal A. 1 2
  1. Department of Chemistry, Bogazici University, Istanbul 34342, Turkey.
  2. Center for Life Sciences and Technologies, Bogazici University, Istanbul 34342, Turkey.
Published in: Bioconjugate Chemistry, 2022, Vol. 33, p.1672-1684
DOI: 10.1021/acs.bioconjchem.2c00298


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