Two-dimensional (2D) tungsten disulfide (WS 2 ) quantum dots offer numerous promising applications in materials and optoelectronic sciences. Additionally, the catalytic and photoluminescence properties of ultra-small WS 2 nanoparticles are of potential interest in biomedical sciences. Addressing the use of WS 2 in the context of infection, the present study describes the conjugation of two potent antimicrobial peptides with WS 2 quantum dots, as well as the application of the resulting conjugates in antimicrobial therapy and bioimaging. In doing so, we determined the three-dimensional solution structure of the quantum dot-conjugated antimicrobial peptide by a series of high-resolution nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) techniques, correlating this to the disruption of both model lipid and bacterial membranes, and to several key biological performances, including antimicrobial and anti-biofilm effects, as well as cell toxicity. The results demonstrate that particle conjugation enhances the antimicrobial and anti-biofilm potency of these peptides, effects inferred to be due to multi-dendate interactions for the conjugated peptides. As such, our study provides information on the mode-of-action of such conjugates, laying the foundation for their potential use in treatment and monitoring of infections. © 2019 Elsevier B.V.