ACS Appl Mater Interfaces. 2021 Jul 19. doi: 10.1021/acsami.1c00340. Online ahead of print.
Bacterial colonization on biomedical devices often leads to biofilms that are recalcitrant to antibiotic treatment and the leading cause of hospital-acquired infections. We have invented a novel pretreatment chemistry for device surfaces to produce a high-density three-dimensional (3-D) network of covalently linked S-nitrosothiol (RSNO), which is a nitric oxide (NO) donor. Poly(polyethylene glycol-hydroxyl-terminated) (i.e., PPEG-OH) brushes were grafted from an ozone-pretreated polyurethane (PU) surface. The high-density hydroxyl groups on the dangling PPEG-OH brushes then underwent condensation with a mercapto-silane (i.e., MPS, mercaptopropyl trimethoxysilane) followed by S-nitrosylation to produce a 3-D network of NO-releasing RSNO to form the PU/PPEG-OH-MPS-NO coating. This 3-D coating produces NO flux of up to 7 nmol/(cm2 min), which is nearly 3 orders of magnitude higher than the picomole/(cm2 min) levels of other NO-releasing biomedical implants previously reported. The covalent immobilization of RSNO avoids donor leaching and reduces the risks of cytotoxicity arising from leachable RSNO. Our coated PU surfaces display good biocompatibility and exhibit excellent antibiofilm formation activity in vitro (up to 99.99%) against a broad spectrum of Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria. Further, the high-density RSNO achieves nearly 99% and 99.9% in vivo reduction of Pseudomonas aeruginosa (P. aeruginosa) and methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) in a murine subcutaneous implantation infection model. Our surface chemistry to create high NO payload without NO-donor leaching can be applied to many biomedical devices.