- Gold-coated polyurethanes were chemisorbed with three cell-adhesion peptides having an N-terminal cysteine: cys-arg-gly-asp (CRGD), cys-arg-glu-asp-val (CREDV), and the cyclic peptide cys-cys-arg-arg-gly-asp-try-leu-cys (CCRRGDWLC). The peptides were selected based on their presumed preferential interactions with the cell-surface integrins on vascular endothelial cells. The ability of the surfaces to support the preferential adhesion of human vascular endothelial cells was studied by comparing in vitro adhesion results for these cells with those from mouse 3T3 fibroblasts. Surface modification with the peptides was confirmed by water-contact angles and XPS. Surface morphology was determined by AFM and SEM. In vitro cell-culture studies in conjunction with plasma-protein adsorption and immunoblotting were performed on the various modified surfaces. The data suggest that peptide-modified surfaces have significant potential for supporting cell adhesion. Little or no cell adhesion was noted on gold- or cysteine-modified control surfaces. Human vascular endothelial cells showed the greatest adhesion to the CCRRGDWLC-modified surfaces, and the 3T3 fibroblasts adhered best to the CREDV-modified surfaces. Protein adsorption studies suggest that the preferential adsorption of the cell-adhesive proteins fibronectin and vitronectin is not likely mediating the differences noted. It is concluded that the cell-adhesive peptide-modified gold-coated polymers have significant potential for further development both as model substrates for fundamental studies and for use in biomaterials applications.