Induction of a functional, tight monolayer of renal epithelial cells on a synthetic membrane to be applied in a bioartificial kidney device requires for bio‐activation of the membrane. The current golden standard in bio‐activation is the combination of a random polymeric catechol (L‐DOPA) coating and collagen type IV (Col IV). Here the possibility of replacing this with defined monomeric catechol functionalization on a biomaterial surface using supramolecular ureido‐pyrimidinone (UPy)‐moieties is investigated. Monomeric catechols modified with a UPy‐unit are successfully incorporated and presented in supramolecular UPy‐polymer films and membranes. Unfortunately, these UPy‐catechols are unable to improve epithelial cell monolayer formation over time, solely or in combination with Col IV. L‐DOPA combined with Col IV is able to induce a tight monolayer capable of transport on electrospun supramolecular UPy‐membranes. This study shows that a random polymeric catechol coating cannot be simply mimicked by defined monomeric catechols as supramolecular additives. There is still a long way to go in order to synthetically mimic simple natural structures.
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