Welcome to BörnerLab

Research Overview

  1. Synthesis and design of functional hybrid polymers (bioconjugates)
  2. Bio-mimetic formation of structure and function in synthetic polymers (peptide-guided organization and structure based functions)
  3. Pseudopeptides and precision polymers for biomedical applications (integrated polymer systems for gene or drug delivery)
  4. Bio-functionalization of surfaces (bioactive polymer fibers, scaffolds and material interfaces; Bio-inspired adhesion segments in block copolymers, (bio)-functional coatings, crystal growth modifiers)

Objectives: Controlling interactions in synthetic polymers as precisely as in proteins would have a strong impact on polymer science. Advanced structural and functional control can lead to rational design of, integrated nano- and microstructures. To achieve this, properties of oligopeptides were exploited. By incorporating these as monodisperse segments into synthetic polymers we show how to program structure formation in polymers, control inorganic-organic interfaces in fiber composites, induce structure in biomacromolecules for biomedical applications and generate bioactive surfaces to control biological systems.


17.09.2022 - Antimicrobial finish of polyethersulfone-membranes: Sticking photosensitizers like marine mussels would do
New Paper released in Advanced Engineering Materials.

A chlorin-based photosensitizer, known from photodynamic therapy was derivatized to realize antimicrobial finishes for water-filtration membranes. The introduced catechol moieties known from adhesive systems of marine mussels, improved the coating stability and affect both positioning and packing of the photosensitizers, to retain singlet oxygen production. The irradiation of coated membranes by visible light significantly reduces bacterial growth of both gram-positive and gram-negative strains.

Full article link: https://doi.org/10.1002/adem.202201279

30.05.2022 - Congratulations to Jana Krüger
Today Jana Krüger has defended her outstanding PhD theses „Muschelinspirierte Polymerisation: Über die vollsynthetische Variante der enzymaktivierten Herstellung universeller Haftstoffe“ with “summa cum laude”.

Congratulations and good luck for your future career!

25.01.2022 - Broadening the chemical space of mussel-inspired polymerization to roll out the TCC-polymer platform
New Paper released in Macromolecules.

The mussel-inspired polymerization (MIPoly) of bisquinone (AA type) and dithiol (BB type) monomers utilizes room temperature Michael-type polyaddition to form polymers with adhesive thiol–catechol connectivities (TCCs) in their backbone. The combination of five bisquinones and eight dithiols proves the generic character of this robust polymerization and leads to a TCC-polymer library with 40 different polymers. The set of adhesives is investigated in detail, and structure–property relationships are studied, analyzing material properties and adhesive capabilities. Dry adhesive tests are carried out under hot-melt-like conditions, revealing adhesive strengths up to 2.40 MPa for gluing aluminum and 1.26 MPa for polypropylene. A selected set of TCC adhesives is further studied under seawater-model conditions for the wet-gluing and wet-curing of technical aluminum substrates. The library approach offers access to novel adhesives in the field of mussel-inspired glues as shown by seawater-tolerant adhesives that are providing adhesive strengths of up to 1.25 MPa under hostile high-salt conditions.

Full article link: https://doi.org/10.1021/acs.macromol.1c02192

01.12.2021 - BMBF-Projekt
In der BMBF Förderlinie „Zukunftstechnologien für die industrielle Bioökonomie: Schwerpunkt Biohybride Technologien“ wurde das Verbundprojekt unter der Koordination der HU Berlin erfolgreich eingeworben. Zu dem Thema „Biohybride Klebsysteme: Über enzymaktivierte Polymerisation zur Technologieplattform der Adhäsionsausschaltung auf Knopfdruck“ forscht der Verbund aus HU, Henkel, Fraunhofer IAP und INURU an neuen, schaltbaren Klebstoffen die für zukünftige Rezyklierungsstrategien in einer modernen Kreislaufwirtschaft dringlich notwendig sind.

11.08.2021 - BMBF-Projekt
Im BMBF Ideenwettbewerb „Biologisierung der Technik“ wurde das Projekt „LigNovolac“ erfolgreich eingeworben. Unter dem Thema „Kleben wie Holz und Muscheln: Nachhaltige Klebstoffe für Korallenriff-Rekonstitution“ forscht ein Team aus dem AK Börner in Zusammenarbeit mit Henkel an neuen Klebstoffen, die zur Setzung von temperaturresistenten Korallen für die Rettung geschädigter Korallenriffe dringlich notwendig sind.

Abb. 1.: Unterwasserkleber können maßgeschneiderte Lösungen aus biologischen Klebesystemen mit Nachhaltigkeit und ökologischer Verträglichkeit verbinden.
01.04.2021 - Jana Maria Krüger was awarded with a Talk Prize at 23rd JCF-Frühjahrssymposium
Congratulations to Jana Maria Krüger! At the 23rd JCF-Frühjahrssymposium her presentation titled "Paving the way toward a material platform via mussel-inspired polymerization" was awarded with a Talk Prize (Second Place). The 23rd JCF-Frühjahrssymposium was organized by JCF from Leipzig, Halle/Saale, Dresden and Berlin and took place in the online venue Gather.Town.

18.02.2021 - Congratulations to Narendra Lagumaddepalli Venkatareddy
Today Narendra Lagumaddepalli Venkatareddy has defended his outstanding PhD theses „Revealing secrets of mussel-glue mimetic peptides; From advanced NMR analysis to computational process modellings“.

Congratulations and good luck for your future career!

05.02.2021 - Implementing Zn2+ ion and pH-value control into artificial mussel glue proteins by abstracting a His-rich domain form preCollagen
New Paper released in Soft Matter.

Abstract: A His-rich domain of preCollagen-D found in byssal threads is derivatized with Cys and Dopa flanks to allow for mussel-inspired polymerization. Artificial mussel glue proteins are accessed that combine cysteinyldopa for adhesion with sequences for pH or Zn2+induced β-sheet formation. The artificial constructs show strong adsorption to Al2O3, the resulting coatings tolerate hypersaline conditions and cohesion is improved by activating the β-sheet formation, that enhances E-modulus up to 60%.

Full article link: https://doi.org/10.1039/D0SM02118K

28.01.2021 - Accessing the Next Generation of Synthetic Mussel-Glue Polymers via Mussel-Inspired Polymerization
New Paper released in Angewandte Chemie International Edition.

Abstract: The formation of cysteinyldopa as biogenic connectivity in proteins is used to inspire a chemical pathway toward mussel-adhesive mimics. The mussel-inspired polymerization (MIPoly) exploits the chemically diverse family of bisphenol monomers that is oxidizable with 2-iodoxybenzoic acid to give bisquinones. Those react at room temperature with dithiols in Michael-type polyaddition, leading to polymers with thiol–catechol–connectivities (TCC). A set of TCC-polymers prove adhesive behavior even on challenging poly(propylene) substrates and there they compete in dry adhesive strength with commercial epoxy resins. The MIPoly promises ease of scale up and exhibits high modularity to tailor adhesives, as proven on a small library, where one candidate shows wet adhesion on aluminum substrates in both water and sea water models.

Full article link: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/anie.202015833

24.11.2020 - Information-Based Design of Polymeric Drug Formulation Additives
New Paper released in Biomacromolecules 2020.

Tailor-made copolymers are designed based on a peptide-poly(ethylene glycol) (QFFLFFQ-PEG) conjugate as a blueprint, to solubilize the photosensitizer meta-tetra(hydroxyphenyl)chlorin (m-THPC). The relevant functionalities of the parent peptide-PEG are mimicked by employing monomer pairs that copolymerize in a strictly alternating manner. While styrene (S) or 4-vinylbenzyl-phthalimide (VBP) provide aromatic moieties like Phe, the aliphatic isobutyl side chain of Leu4 is mimicked by maleic anhydride (MA) that reacts after polymerization with isobutylamine to give the isobutylamide-carboxyl functional unit (iBuMA). A set of copolymer-PEG solubilizers is synthesized by controlled radical polymerization, systematically altering the length of the functional segment (DPn = 2, 4, 6) and the side chain functionalization (iBuMA, iPrMA, MeMA). The m-THPC hosting and release properties of P[S-alt-iBuMA]6-PEG reached higher payload capacities and more favored release rates than the parent peptide-PEG conjugate. Interestingly, P[S-alt-RMA]n-PEG mimics the sensitivity of the peptide-PEG solubilizer well, where the exchange of Leu4 residue by Val and Ala significantly reduces the drug loading by 92%. A similar trend is found with P[S-alt-RMA]n-PEG as the exchange of iBu → iPr → Me reduces the payload capacity up to 78%.

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