Antivirulent and Antibiofilm Salicylidene Acylhydrazide Complexes in Solution and at Interfaces
The growing bacterial resistance against antibiotics creates a limitation for using traditional antibiotics and requests development of new approaches for treatment of bacterial infections. Among the bacterial infections that are most difficult to treat, biofilm-associated infections are one of the most hazardous. Consequently, the prevention of biofilm formation is a very important issue. One of the techniques that are widely investigated nowadays for this purpose is surface modification by polymer brushes that allows generating antifouling antibacterial surfaces. Previously, it was reported that salicylidene acylhydrazides (hydrazones) are good candidates as antivirulence drugs targeting the type three secretion system (T3SS). This secretion system is used by several Gramnegative pathogens, including Pseudomonas aeruginosa, to deliver toxins into a host cell. Furthermore, the chemical structure of these substances allows formation of complexes with metalions, such as Fe3+ and Ga3+. The antibacterial activity of Ga3+ is well known and attributed to its similarity to the Fe3+ ion. It has also been shown that Ga3+ ions are able to suppress biofilm formation and growth in bacteria. In this thesis the chemistry of antibacterial and antivirulence Ga3+-Hydrazone complexes in solution was studied. First, to get insights in the solution chemistry, the protonation and the stability constants as well as the speciation of the Ga3+-Hydrazone complexes were determined. Additionally, a procedure for anchoring one of the hydrazone substances to antifouling polymer brushes was optimized, and the resulting surfaces were characterized. Results showed that the complexation with Ga3+ ions stabilizes the ligand and increases its solubility. Ga3+ ion binds to the hydrazone molecule forming a strong chelate that should be stable at physiological conditions. The different biological assays, such as Ga3+ uptake, antivirulence and antibiofilm effects, indicated very complex interaction of these complexes with the bacterial cell. Negatively charged and zwitterionic surfaces strongly reduced protein adsorption as well as biofilm formation.
Therefore, the antifouling zwitterionic poly-[2(methacryloyloxy)ethyl]dimethyl-3-sulfopropyl)-ammonium hydroxide (pMEDSAH) brushes were post-modified and successfully functionalized with bioactive substances via a blockcopolymerization strategy. However, in order to maintain the availability of the bioactive substance after functionalization, the hydrophobic polyglycidylmethacrylate (pGMA) top block is probably better to functionalize with a lipophilic molecules to reduce diblock copolymer brush rearrangement.