Immobilization of proteins onto polymer surfaces usually requires specific reactive functional groups. Here, we show an easy one-step method to conjugate protein covalently onto almost any polymer surface, including low protein-binding poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG), without the requirement for the presence of specific functional groups. Several types of proteins, including alkaline phosphatase, bovine serum albumin, and polyclonal antibodies, were photoimmobilized onto a PEG-coated polymer surface using a water-soluble benzophenone as photosensitizer. Protein functionality after immobilization was verified for both enzymes and antibodies, and their presence on the surface was confirmed by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and confocal fluorescence microscopy. Conjugation of capture antibody onto the PEG coating was employed for a simplified ELISA protocol without the need for blocking uncoated surface areas, showing ng/mL sensitivity to a cytokine antigen target. Moreover, spatially patterned attachment of fluorescently labeled protein onto the low-binding PEG-coated surface was achieved with a projection lithography system that enabled the creation of micrometer-sized protein features.
Biomacromolecules, 2014, Vol 15, Issue 3, p. 894-899