Fabrication of Highly Uniform Gel Coatings by the Conversion of Surface-Anchored Metal–Organic Frameworks

We report the fabrication of 3D, highly porous, covalently bound polymer films of homogeneous thickness. These surface-bound gels combine the advantages of metal–organic framework (MOF) materials, namely, the enormous flexibility and the large size of the maximum pore structures and, in particular, the possibility to grow them epitaxially on modified substrates, with those of covalently connected gel materials, namely, the absence of metal ions in the deposited material, a robust framework consisting of covalent bonds, and, most importantly, pronounced stability under biological conditions. The conversion of a SURMOF (surface-mounted MOF) yields a surface-grafted gel. These SURGELs can be loaded with bioactive compounds and applied as bioactive coatings and provide a drug-release platform in in vitro cell culture studies.