High Aspect Ratio Nanostructures Kill Bacteria via Storage and Release of Mechanical Energy

Linklater, D, De Volder, M, Baulin, V, Werner, M, Jessl, S, Golozar, M, Maggini, L, Rubanov, S, Hanssen, E, Juodkazis, S and Ivanova, E 2018, 'High Aspect Ratio Nanostructures Kill Bacteria via Storage and Release of Mechanical Energy', ACS Nano, vol. 12, no. 7, pp. 6657-6667.

Document type: Journal Article
Collection: Journal Articles

Title High Aspect Ratio Nanostructures Kill Bacteria via Storage and Release of Mechanical Energy
Author(s) Linklater, D
De Volder, M
Baulin, V
Werner, M
Jessl, S
Golozar, M
Maggini, L
Rubanov, S
Hanssen, E
Juodkazis, S
Ivanova, E
Year 2018
Journal name ACS Nano
Volume number 12
Issue number 7
Start page 6657
End page 6667
Total pages 11
Publisher American Chemical Society
Abstract The threat of a global rise in the number of untreatable infections caused by antibiotic-resistant bacteria calls for the design and fabrication of a new generation of bactericidal materials. Here, we report a concept for the design of antibacterial surfaces, whereby cell death results from the ability of the nanofeatures to deflect when in contact with attaching cells. We show, using three-dimensional transmission electron microscopy, that the exceptionally high aspect ratio (100-3000) of vertically aligned carbon nanotubes (VACNTs) imparts extreme flexibility, which enhances the elastic energy storage in CNTs as they bend in contact with bacteria. Our experimental and theoretical analyses demonstrate that, for high aspect ratio structures, the bending energy stored in the CNTs is a substantial factor for the physical rupturing of both Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria. The highest bactericidal rates (99.3% for Pseudomonas aeruginosa and 84.9% for Staphylococcus aureus) were obtained by modifying the length of the VACNTs, allowing us to identify the optimal substratum properties to kill different types of bacteria efficiently. This work highlights that the bactericidal activity of high aspect ratio nanofeatures can outperform both natural bactericidal surfaces and other synthetic nanostructured multifunctional surfaces reported in previous studies. The present systems exhibit the highest bactericidal activity of a CNT-based substratum against a Gram-negative bacterium reported to date, suggesting the possibility of achieving close to 100% bacterial inactivation on VACNT-based substrata.
Subject Colloid and Surface Chemistry
Keyword(s) carbon nanotubes
interface interactions
mechanobactericidal mechanism
nanoscale mechanics
storage of elastic energy
vertically aligned carbon nanotubes
DOI - identifier 10.1021/acsnano.8b01665
Copyright notice © 2018 American Chemical Society.
ISSN 1936-0851
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