Surface Modification and Functionalization

BOC Sciences provides professional surface modification and functionalization services. We can provide customized surface modification and functionalization with polyethylene glycol (PEG) of various kinds of biomaterials, such as nanoparticles, nanowires, nanotubes, hydrogels, liposomes, microspheres, micelles, microchips, magnetic beads, thin films and membranes, colloidal gold, metal-organic framework and graphenes.

Surface Modification and Functionalization of Biomaterials

Biomaterials mainly contact with tissues and organs, so the interfacial characteristics of a biomaterials’ surface greatly affect the biocompatibility and other biological performance of materials. The surface modification technology represents a logical approach, which does not change the bulk composition, whilst the characteristics of material surface can be engineered to achieve more desirable characteristics. It can also functional modify the material surface, so that it has specific biological properties. Therefore, the surface modification, especially the surface functional modification is widely concerned.

Surface modification and functionalization can be performed by physical or chemical approach. Surface modification and functionalization can be achieved either by altering the atom or molecules on the surface, introducing chemical functional groups to the surface, or by coating the bioactive molecules over the surface of biomaterials. Surface functionalization is an effective and often simpler way of altering the surface properties of a material to achieve specific goals, such as inducing a desired bioresponse, inhibiting potentially adverse reactions, or creating biomimetic microenvironments.

In order to meet the clinical and translational requirements for modified specific biomaterials for tissue engineering and regenerative medicine, more advanced technologies have been introduced to improve the physical, chemical, and biological properties of biomaterials in recent years.

Figure 1. Schematic diagram depicting various surface functionalization techniques.Figure 1. Schematic diagram depicting various surface functionalization techniques. (Rana, D., et al., 2017)

Surface Modification and Functionalization with PEG

PEG plays an important role in biomedicine. It has been widely used in the surface modification and functionalization of biomaterials as a result of non-toxicity, non-immunogenicity, hydrophilicity, flexibility and a high exclusion volume in water. PEG can effectively improving the biocompatibility of biomaterials by decreasing non-specific protein binding and cellular adhesion. The commonly used methods of surface modification of biomaterials by PEG are physical adsorption, grafting polymerization, covalent coupling and plasma treatment. PEG can introduce chemical functional groups to the surface of biomaterials, which can make the surface functionalized materials more specific to the target reaction in the reaction microenvironment and reduce the non-specific adsorption. As a surface modification material, PEGylated surface modification and functionalization is an effective way to improve the hemocompatibility, prolong the half-life of the modified materials in vivo, and improve drug delivery.

Figure 2. Gold nanoparticles' (AuNPs) functionalization for theranostics.Figure 2. Gold nanoparticles' (AuNPs) functionalization for theranostics. (Roma-Rodrigues, C., et al., 2017)

BOC Sciences can carry out PEG modification and functionalization on the surface of various biomaterials. Our featured products are various PEG derivatives and copolymers with different reactive groups. We can select the right PEGylate reagents for the materials provided according to the customer's needs, and provide high coverage PEG coating. If you have any specific needs or questions, please feel free to contact us.


  1. Veronese F M, &, Pasut G., 2005. PEGylation, successful approach to drug delivery [J]. Drug discovery today, 10(21), pp. 1451–1458.
  2. Rana, D., et al., 2017. Surface Functionalization of Biomaterials. Biology and Engineering of Stem Cell Niches, pp. 331–343.
  3. Roma-Rodrigues, C., et al., 2017. Tumor Microenvironment Modulation via Gold Nanoparticles Targeting Malicious Exosomes: Implications for Cancer Diagnostics and Therapy. International Journal of Molecular Sciences, 18(1), pii: E162.

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