Durable Zwitterionic Nanocomposite Hydrogel as Biomedical Catheter

Project Details


The implantable medical catheters, such as Glaucoma drainage device, urinary catheter and flushing catheter, are used to assist, replace and reinforce the defected organs or tissues to maintain their normal operation and functions. Besides to the therapeutic effect, these medical devices should allow in-vivo homeostasis. However, the implantation usually accompanies with inflammation, infection and tissue-resistance, which may lead to the failure of the implantation and even threatening the life of the patients. Therefore, it is highly desirable to establish a highly biocompatible implantable medical catheter, which is the major objective of this proposal. Currently, zwitterionic polymers have been utilized as an antifouling materials due to their superhydrophilicity and charge balance. The zwitterionic polymers also were applied onto devices to repel the non-specific adsorption from proteins and bacteria. However, the considerable limitation to constitute the hydrogel-based zwitterionic devices is their weak mechanical properties (the stretch stress 〜5 KPa). Accordingly, this work is to develop a novel zwitterionic nanocomposite hydrogel as medical catheter, which not only maintains the original excellent biocompatibility, but also possess high mechanical property (the stretch stress >150 KPa) to meet the requirement of biomedical uses. The zwitterionic nanocomposite hydrogel-based catheter will be prepared by mixing poly(sulfobetaine) and nanoclay and then synthesize by UV polymerization. The chemical structure and mechanical property of the catheter will be characterized by NMR and tensile tests. The fouling resistance will be monitored by using the enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) and bacterial adsorption measurements under observation of fluorescence microscopy. The studies with the animal model will be carried out to verify the in-vivo biocompatibility. Ultimately, this proposal will develop a commercially feasible antifouling hydrogel-based catheter with ultra-high mechanical property.
Effective start/end date1/02/1731/01/18

UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This project contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 7 - Affordable and Clean Energy
  • SDG 11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities
  • SDG 17 - Partnerships for the Goals


  • Implantable medical catheters
  • Zwitterionic polymers
  • Biocompatibility
  • Antifouling materials


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