Polymer brushes on thiol-modified gold surfaces were synthesized by using terminal thiol groups for the surface-initiated free radical polymerization of methacrylic acid and dimethylaminoethyl methacrylate, respectively. Atomic force microscopy shows that the resulting poly(methacrylic acid) (PMAA) and poly(dimethylaminoethyl methacrylate) (PDMAEMA) brushes are homogeneous. Contact angle measurements show that the brushes are pH-responsive and can reversibly be protonated and deprotonated. Mineralization of the brushes with calcium phosphate at different pH yields homogeneously mineralized surfaces, and preosteoblastic cells proliferate on both the nonmineralized and mineralized surfaces. The number of living cells on the mineralized hybrid surfaces is ca. 3 times (PDMAEMA) and 10 times (PMAA) higher than on the corresponding nonmineralized brushes.
Polymer Brush Controlled Bioinspired Calcium Phosphate Mineralization and Bone Cell Growth - Biomacromolecules (ACS Publications)