Avoiding nonspecific surface adsorption is a crucial and often challenging issue in many single-molecule
studies and analytical applications. In this work, we investigated glass surfaces coated with
cross-linking star-shaped polyethylene glycol (4-arm PEG) and demonstrated that this coating can be
used for effective suppression of nonspecific protein binding, such as streptavidin. Single-molecule
fluorescence images show that only a few molecules remain nonspecifically bound to surfaces
treated with protein after sufficient rinsing, i.e. less than to a state-of-the-art BSA coating.
Furthermore, different applications for star-shaped PEG-passivated surfaces are shown.