The term fouling generally refers to an undesirable process in which a surface becomes encrusted with material from the surrounding environment. In the case of biofouling, that material consists of organisms and their by-products e.g., extracellular polysaccharides and metabolites. Biofouling limits the performance of devices in numerous applications; however, this review focuses on antifouling biomaterials for marine and biomedical applications. The surface chemistry and physical properties of the substratum are both crucial to preventing the recruitment of biofouling organisms. Natural antifouling surfaces exhibit both chemical and physical attributes. The chemical structure is discussed briefly as it relates to both anti-fouling and fouling-release properties. However, our focus has been to study physical cues as they relate to the initial attachment of fouling organisms.

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DOI: 10.1016/S1369-7021(10)70058-4