Soft, adhesive (+) alpha tocopherol phosphate planar bilayers that control oral biofilm growth through a substantive antimicrobial effect

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


  • Mais M Saleh
  • Guy Carpenter
  • Vincenzo Abbate
  • Gordon Proctor
  • Richard D Harvey
  • Robert J Gambogi
  • Anthony Geonnotti
  • Robert Hider
  • Stuart A Jones

Colleges, School and Institutes


‘Soft’ nanomaterials have the potential to produce substantive antibiofilm effects. The aim of this study was to understand the oral antimicrobial activity of soft nanomaterials generated from alpha-tocopherol (α-T) and alpha-tocopherol phosphate (α-TP). (+) α-TP formed planar bilayer islands (175 ± 21 nm, −14.9 ± 3.5 mV) in a Trizma® buffer, whereas (+) α-T formed spherical liposomes (563 ± 1 nm, −10.5 ± 0.2 mV). The (+) α-TP bilayers displayed superior Streptococcus oralis biofilm growth retardation, a more substantive action, generated a superior adsorption to hydroxyapatite and showed an enhanced inhibition of multi-species bacterial saliva biofilm growth (38 ± 7μm vs 58 ± 18 μm, P ˂ 0.05) compared to (+) α-T. Atomic force microscopy data indicated that the ability of the ‘soft’ α-TP nanomaterials to transition into planar bilayer structures upon contact with interfaces facilitated their adhesive properties and substantive antimicrobial effects.


Original languageEnglish
JournalNanomedicine: Nanotechnology, Biology and Medicine
Early online date2 Feb 2018
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 2 Feb 2018