This article describes the peripheral modification of a polypropylene amine dendrimer of second generation with eight 4-bromo-1,8-naphthalimide units and its copper and zinc complexes. The new dendrimer and its metal complexes have been characterized by electronic (UV-vis and fluorescence) and vibrational (IR and Raman) spectral methods in view of their antibacterial and antifungal activity. The results have shown that the two metal ions form complexes with the dendrimer ligand. In vitro antimicrobial screening of the newly synthesized metallodendrimers showed promising antimicrobial activities against some pathogenic Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria and the yeasts Candida lipolytica. The results suggest that the new metal complexes could find application in designing new antimicrobial preparations to control the spread of infections caused especially by Acinetobacter, Micrococcus and Candida species. (C) 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.