Polycations, mimicking activity of antibacterial peptides, belong to an important class of molecules investigated as a support or as an alternative to antibiotics. In this work, studies of modified linear amphiphilic statistical polymethyloxazoline (PMOX) and polyethyleneimine copolymers (PMOX_PEI) series are presented. Variation of PEI content in the structure results in controllable changes of polymeric aggregates zeta potential. The structure with the highest positive charge shows the best antimicrobial activity, well visible in tests against model Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria, fungi, and mycobacterium strains. The polymer toxicity is evaluated with MTT and hemolysis assay as a reference. Quartz crystal microbalance (QCM-D) is used to investigate interaction between polycations and a model lipid membrane. Polymer activity correlates well with molecular structure, showing that amphiphilic component is altering polymer behavior in contact with the lipid bilayer.
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