AMB Express

Surface functionalization by covalent immobilization of an innovative carvacrol derivative to avoid fungal biofilm formation.

PMID 25852986


Carvacrol, an aromatic terpenic compound, known to be antimicrobial was grafted onto gold surfaces via two strategies based on newly-synthesized cross-linkers involving either an ester bond which can be cleaved by microbial esterases, or a covalent ether link. Surface functionalizations were characterized at each step by reflection absorption infrared spectroscopy (RAIRS). The two functionalized gold samples both led to a loss of culturability of the yeast Candida albicans, higher than 65%, indicating that the activity of the freshly-designed surfaces was probably due to still covalently immobilized carvacrol. On the contrary, when a phenyl group replaced the terpenic moiety, the yeast culturability increased by about 30%, highlighting the specific activity of carvacrol grafted on the surfaces. Confocal microscopy analyses showed that the mode of action of the functionalized surfaces with the ester or the ether of carvacrol was, in both cases, fungicidal and not anti-adhesive. Finally, this study shows that covalently immobilization of terpenic compounds can be used to design promising antimicrobial surfaces.