Use of surface-sensitive methods for the study of adsorption and cross-linking of marine bioadhesives
Journal article, 2005

The establishment of the bond of sessile marine organisms such as barnacles, mussels, and algae in the marine environment starts with the secretion and the adsorption of the adhesive biopolymers to the substrate. Subsequently, this is followed by the formation of cohesive interactions with the next layer of adhesive biopolymers that are deposited/adsorbed on top of the first layer. These two fundamental processes for the adhesive plaque buildup have been subjected to several investigations in recent years using model molecules, especially Mefp-1 extracted from the blue mussel Mytilus edulis. With the introduction of optical surface-sensitive methods such as ellipsometry, surface plasmon resonance (SPR), and infrared spectroscopy (IR), it has been possible to elucidate both the kinetics of adsorption and structure of the Mefp-1 film. In contrast to adsorption, the cohesive interactions or the cross-linking are not easily followed with these optical methods and new approaches and techniques are required. One such technique that has been useful is the quartz-crystal microbalance with dissipation monitoring (QCM-D), which has been used for cross-linking studies of a variety of biopolymers including bioadhesives from mussel and algae. Copyright © Taylor & Francis Inc.


self-assembled monolayers

transform infrared-spectroscopy

edulis foot proteins


mussel adhesive proteins

quartz-crystal microbalance

atomic-force microscopy

barnacle cement

green-alga enteromorpha


Mattias Berglin

University of Gothenburg

J. Hedlund

University of Gothenburg

Camilla Fant

Chalmers, Chemical and Biological Engineering, Applied Surface Chemistry

H. Elwing

University of Gothenburg

Journal of Adhesion

0021-8464 (ISSN) 1563-518X (eISSN)

Vol. 81 7-8 805-822

Subject Categories

Mechanical Engineering

Materials Engineering

Chemical Engineering



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