Supramolecular Hydro- and Ionogels: A Study of Their Properties and Antibacterial Activity

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Diimidazolium-based organic salts, bearing peptides or amino acids as anions have been synthesised and tested for their gelling ability in biocompatible solvents. These low molecular weight salts were successfully used as gelators in phosphate buffered saline (PBS) solution and ionic liquids. Then, the properties of the obtained soft materials were analysed in terms of melting temperature and gel strength as accounted for by rheological investigations. The gel-phase formation was studied by using UV/Vis and resonance light scattering measurements, whereas the morphology of the soft materials was analysed by using polarised optical microscopy and scanning electron microscopy. To get information about the organisation of the gelator in the gelatinous matrix, X-ray diffraction measurements were performed both on the neat gelators and their gels. The results collected show that the properties of the gel phases, like the thermal stability, the self-repairing ability, the resistance to flow as well as the morphology, are dependent on the nature of the anion. Furthermore, bioassays revealed that the obtained diimidazolium organic salts possessed antimicrobial activity, against gram-negative and gram-positive tester strains. In particular and noteworthy, the diimidazolium organic salts exert a bactericidal capability, which was retained even if they are included in the gel phase. Thus, a novel kind of bioactive soft material was obtained that could be fruitfully employed as a non-covalent coating exerting antibacterial capability.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)16297-16311
Number of pages15
Publication statusPublished - 2017

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Catalysis
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Chemistry(all)

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