Selected ESR: Lili Zhen
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Supervisor Name: Claudia Crestini

Industrial Supervisors: Giulia Bianchetti

Recruiting Organisation: CSGI at University of Rome Tor Vergata



Interaction of Natural wood extracts with biofilms


Elucidate the mechanism of interactions of chemically modified natural wood extract with biofilm



Tannins are natural products with multiple structure units with free phenolic groups. Tannins are classified into hydrolysable tannins that consist into esters of gallic acid with a core sugar, often glucose, and release gallic or ellagic acid upon hydrolysis, and proanthocyanidins (or condensed tannins) that are oligomers or polymers of flavan-3-ol units linked at the 4-6 or 4-8 positions. Tannins molecular weight ranging from 500 to > 36000 Da.

The fundamental role of tannins is defending the plant against insects, infections, fungi or bacteria. The defense mechanism relies on the capability of tannins form non-reversible complexes with proteins and other biopolymers.Moreover, tannins are highly biocompatible with significant antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activity, which makes them ideal candidates for the development of antibiofilm products/materials.

The objectives are to select suitable tannins, develop analytical techniques for tannins identification, and specifically develop chemical strategies for specific functionalization in order to improve surface adhesion properties/biofilm prevention/removal properties.