Investigation of the growth mechanisms of diglyme plasma polymers on amyloid fibril networks

Yali Li, Nicholas P. Reynolds, Katie E. Styan, Benjamin W. Muir, John S. Forsythe, Christopher D. Easton

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2 Citations (Scopus)


Within the area of biomaterials research, the ability to tailor a materials surface chemistry while presenting a biomimetic topography is a useful tool for studying cell-surface and cell-cell interactions. For the study reported here we investigated the deposition of diglyme plasma polymer films (DGpp) onto amyloid fibril networks (AFNs), which have morphologies that mimic the extracellular matrix. We extend our previous work to observe that the nanoscale contours of the AFNs are well preserved even under thick layers of DGpp. The width of the surface features is positively correlated to the DGpp thickness. DGpp film growth conformed to the underlying fibril features, with a gradual smoothing out of the resultant surface topography. Further, to understand how the films grow on top of AFNs, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy depth profiling was employed to determine the elemental composition within the coating, perpendicular to the plane of the substrate. It was found that AFNs partially fragment during the initial stage of plasma polymerisation, and these fragments then mix with the growing DGpp to form an intermixed interface region above the AFN. The findings in this study are likely applicable to situations where plasma polymerisation is used to apply an overcoat to adsorbed organic and/or biological molecules.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)162-168
Number of pages7
JournalApplied Surface Science
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jan 2016


  • Amyloid fibril network
  • Atomic force microscopy
  • Depth profile
  • Plasma polymerisation
  • X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy

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