The development of low-cost, non-toxic, scalable antimicrobial textiles is needed to address the spread of deadly pathogens. Here, we report a polysiloxane textile coating that possesses two modes of antimicrobial inactivation, passive contact inactivation through amine/imine functionalities and active photodynamic inactivation through the generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS). This material can be coated and cross-linked onto natural and synthetic textiles through a simple soak procedure, followed by UV cure to afford materials exhibiting no aqueous leaching and only minimal leaching in organic solvents. This coating minimally impacts the mechanical properties of the fabric while also imparting hydrophobicity. Passive inactivation of Escherichia coli (E. coli) and methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is achieved with >98% inactivation after 24 h, with a 23× and 3× inactivation rate increase against E. coli and MRSA, respectively, when green light is used to generate ROS. Up to 90% decrease in the infectivity of SARS-CoV-2 after 2 h of irradiated incubation with the material is demonstrated. These results show that modifying textiles with dual-functional polymers results in robust and highly antimicrobial materials that are expected to find widespread use in combating the spread of deadly pathogens.
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