Enhancing the Protein Resistance of Silicone with PEO-Silane Amphiphiles
Texas A&M University
The safety and effectiveness of blood-contacting medical devices is often compromised due to surface-induced thrombosis. Proteins will first begin to accumulate, and are often quickly joined by bacteria and other biomass, leading to increased risk of blockages and infection. To prevent this accumulation, biomaterials must be largely protein resistant. Poly(ethylene oxide) (PEO), a naturally hydrophilic material, has a high affinity for water and is capable of reducing protein adsorption if properly used. When incorporated into materials, this molecule's functionality depends on its migration from areas within the material to the water-surface interface. PEO-silane amphiphiles were prepared to improve the protein resistance of silicones, commonly used for medical devices, by achieving this rapid migration of PEO to the surface in water. When silicone was modified with these amphiphiles, several showed a remarkable increase in hydrophilicity. These films also showed significant improvement over unmodified silicone in protein adsorption studies, with a much higher protein resistance.