Mucus-Inspired Supramolecular Adhesives with Oil-Regulated Molecular Configurations and Long-Lasting Antibacterial Properties

Wenqing He, Zhaoyue Wang, Changshun Hou, Xin Huang, Bo Yi, Yuhe Yang, Wenrui Zheng, Xin Zhao, Xi Yao

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


Inspired by mucus, which provides an ideal supramolecular model and whose fluid-like (viscous) and solid-like (elastic) behaviors can be adjusted to meet different physiological requirements, we report oil-regulated supramolecular adhesives by the co-assembly of polyurea oligomers and carvacrol oils. The adhesive is crosslinked by weak but abundant hydrogen bonds, which can be regulated by the incorporated carvacrol oils through the competition of intermolecular hydrogen bonds, presenting a unique set of mucus-mimicking features including oil-regulated mechanics, processability, reusable adhesivity, and extreme longevity in both air and water. Owing to the intrinsic bactericidal effect of the carvacrol oils, the developed adhesives can serve as potent antibacterial coatings with both rapid contact killing (99.9% killing within 15 min) and long-term controlled release abilities (up to 70 days), enabling versatile antibacterial applications in diverse conditions. We envision that these adhesives will be useful in buildings and architectures, community and public facilities, food storage and packaging technologies, functional textiles, and practical biomedical fields.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)16877-16886
Number of pages10
JournalACS Applied Materials and Interfaces
Issue number14
Publication statusPublished - 8 Apr 2020


  • antibacterial
  • bioinspired
  • hydrogen bonds
  • oligomer
  • supramolecular adhesives

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)

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