Fibrinogen deposition on silicone oil-infused silver-releasing urinary catheters compromises antibiofilm and anti-encrustation properties

Shuai Zhang (Lead / Corresponding author), Xiao Teng, Xinjin Liang, Geoffrey Michael Gadd, Colin Peter McCoy, Yuhang Dong, Yimeng Wang, Qi Zhao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
72 Downloads (Pure)


Slippery silicone-oil-infused (SOI) surfaces have recently emerged as a promising alternative to conventional anti-infection coatings for urinary catheters to combat biofilm and encrustation formation. Benefiting from the ultralow low hysteresis and slippery behavior, the liquid-like SOI coatings have been found to effectively reduce bacterial adhesion under both static and flow conditions. However, in real clinical settings, the use of catheters may also trigger local inflammation, leading to release of host-secreted proteins, such as fibrinogen (Fgn) that deposits on the catheter surfaces, creating a niche that can be exploited by uropathogens to cause infections. In this work, we report on the fabrication of a silicone oil-infused silver-releasing catheter which exhibited superior durability and robust antibacterial activity in aqueous conditions, reducing biofilm formation of two key uropathogens Escherichia coli and Proteus mirabilis by ∼99%, when compared with commercial all-silicone catheters after 7 days while remaining noncytotoxic toward L929 mouse fibroblasts. After exposure to Fgn, the oil-infused surfaces induced conformational changes in the protein which accelerated adsorption onto the surfaces. The deposited Fgn blocked the interaction of silver with the bacteria and served as a scaffold, which promoted bacterial colonization, resulting in a compromised antibiofilm activity. Fgn binding also facilitated the migration of Proteus mirabilis over the catheter surfaces and accelerated the deposition and spread of crystalline biofilm. Our findings suggest that the use of silicone oil-infused silver-releasing urinary catheters may not be a feasible strategy to combat infections and associated complications arising from severe inflammation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1562-1572
Number of pages11
Issue number4
Early online date20 Jan 2023
Publication statusPublished - 31 Jan 2023


  • Bacteria
  • Biofilms
  • Lipids
  • Silicones
  • Silver

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • General Materials Science
  • Spectroscopy
  • Surfaces and Interfaces
  • Electrochemistry


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