Journal of Materials Science: Materials in Medicine

, Volume 19, Issue 9, pp 3057–3062 | Cite as

Study on antibacterial mechanism of copper-bearing austenitic antibacterial stainless steel by atomic force microscopy

  • Li Nan
  • Yongqian Liu
  • Manqi Lü
  • Ke YangEmail author


A study was made on the antibacterial mechanism of copper-bearing austenitic antibacterial stainless steel by a series of methods such as atomic force microscopy (AFM) observation, force–distance curves and inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometer test. It was observed by AFM that the structure of the outer cell membrane responsible for the cell permeability was substantially changed for the bacteria after contacting with the antibacterial stainless steel, showing that cell walls were seriously damaged and a lot of contents in the cells leaked. It was also found that the adhesion force of bacteria to antibacterial stainless steel was considerably greater than that to the contrast steel, indicating that the electrostatic forces by Cu2+ being an important factor for killing bacteria.


Atomic Force Microscopy Adhesion Force Force Curve Inductively Couple Plasma Mass Spectrometer Distance Curve 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



This work was financially supported by a fund from National Natural Science Foundation (No. 50671101).


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Metal ResearchChinese Academy of SciencesShenyangChina
  2. 2.Graduate School of Chinese Academy of SciencesBeijingChina

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