Fluorine-Free Superhydrophobic Coating with Antibiofilm Properties Based on Pickering Emulsion Templating

Mor Maayan, Karthik Ananth Mani, Noga Yaakov, Michal Natan, Gila Jacobi, Ayelet Atkins, Einat Zelinger, Elazar Fallik, Ehud Banin, Guy Mechrez

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study presents antibiofilm coating formulations based on Pickering emulsion templating. The coating contains no bioactive material because its antibiofilm properties stem from passive mechanisms that derive solely from the superhydrophobic nature of the coating. Moreover, unlike most of the superhydrophobic formulations, our system is fluorine-free, thus making the method eminently suitable for food and medical applications. The coating formulation is based on water in toluene or xylene emulsions that are stabilized using commercial hydrophobic silica, with polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) dissolved in toluene or xylene. The structure of the emulsions and their stability was characterized by confocal microscopy and cryogenic-scanning electron microscopy (cryo-SEM). The most stable emulsions are applied on polypropylene (PP) surfaces and dried in an oven to form PDMS/silica coatings in a process called emulsion templating. The structure of the resulting coatings was investigated by atomic force microscopy (AFM) and SEM. The surface of the coatings shows a honeycomb-like structure that exhibits a combination of micron-scale and nanoscale roughness, which endows it with its superhydrophobic properties. After tuning, the superhydrophobic properties of the coatings demonstrated highly efficient passive antibiofilm activity. In vitro antibiofilm trials with E. coli indicate that the coatings reduced the biofilm accumulation by 83% in the xylene-water-based surfaces and by 59% in the case of toluene-water-based surfaces.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)37693-37703
Number of pages11
JournalACS applied materials & interfaces
Issue number31
StatePublished - 11 Aug 2021


  • Pickering emulsions
  • antibiofilm
  • coatings
  • fluorine-free
  • superhydrophobic

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Materials Science(all)


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