Tuning the density profile of surface-grafted hyaluronan and the effect of counter-ions

  • Ida BertsEmail author
  • Giovanna Fragneto
  • Jöns Hilborn
  • Adrian R. Rennie
Regular Article
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Neutron Biological Physics


The present paper investigates the structure and composition of grafted sodium hyaluronan at a solid-liquid interface using neutron reflection. The solvated polymer at the surface could be described with a density profile that decays exponentially towards the bulk solution. The density profile of the polymer varied depending on the deposition protocol. A single-stage deposition resulted in denser polymer layers, while layers created with a two-stage deposition process were more diffuse and had an overall lower density. Despite the diffuse density profile, two-stage deposition leads to a higher surface excess. Addition of calcium ions causes a strong collapse of the sodium hyaluronan chains, increasing the polymer density near the surface. This effect is more pronounced on the sample prepared by two-stage deposition due to the initial less dense profile. This study provides an understanding at a molecular level of how surface functionalization alters the structure and how surface layers respond to changes in calcium ions in the solvent.

Graphical abstract


Topical issue: Neutron Biological Physics 

Supplementary material

10189_2013_9884_MOESM1_ESM.doc (1.2 mb)
Supplementary material, approximately 1.16 MB.


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Copyright information

© EDP Sciences, SIF, Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ida Berts
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Giovanna Fragneto
    • 2
  • Jöns Hilborn
    • 1
  • Adrian R. Rennie
    • 3
  1. 1.Science for Life Laboratory, Department of Chemistry - Ångström LaboratoryUppsala UniversityUppsalaSweden
  2. 2.Institut Laue-LangevinGrenobleFrance
  3. 3.Department of Physics and Astronomy: Materials PhysicsUppsala UniversityUppsalaSweden

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