Understanding and controlling the interactions between synthetic and biol. materials is of great importance for the development of novel materials for a variety of biomedical and bioanal. applications, including for example stents, vascular grafts and protein microarrays. We have recently developed a two-step strategy that allows precise control over the interactions between synthetic materials surfaces and proteins and cells. In a first step, the surface of interest is modified with a thin polymer coating using surface-initiated controlled radical polymn. This coating prevents non-specific adhesion of cells and proteins, and, in a second step, can serve as a platform to introduce specific bioactive mols. As a first example, we have used these biol. inert polymer brushes as platforms to chemoselectively immobilize O6 alkylguanine - DNA-alkyltransferase (AGT) fusion proteins with a defined orientation and surface d. These protein-functionalized brushes are attractive candidates for the development of protein microarrays. [on SciFinder (R)]