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Injectable biocompatible and biodegradable pH-responsive hollow particle gels containing poly(acrylic acid): the effect of copolymer composition on gel properties.

Authors
  • Halacheva, Silvia S
  • Adlam, Daman J
  • Hendow, Eseelle K
  • Freemont, Tony J
  • Hoyland, Judith
  • Saunders, Brian R
Type
Published Article
Journal
Biomacromolecules
Publisher
American Chemical Society
Publication Date
May 12, 2014
Volume
15
Issue
5
Pages
1814–1827
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1021/bm5002069
PMID: 24684558
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

The potential of various pH-responsive alkyl (meth)acrylate ester- and (meth)acrylic acid-based copolymers, including poly(methyl methacrylate-co-acrylic acid) (PMMA-AA) and poly(n-butyl acrylate-co-methacrylic acid) (PBA-MAA), to form pH-sensitive biocompatible and biodegradable hollow particle gel scaffolds for use in non-load-bearing soft tissue regeneration have been explored. The optimal copolymer design criteria for preparation of these materials have been established. Physical gels which are both pH- and redox-sensitive were formed only from PMMA-AA copolymers. MMA is the optimal hydrophobic monomer, whereas the use of various COOH-containing monomers, e.g., MAA and AA, will always induce a pH-triggered physical gelation. The PMMA-AA gels were prepared at physiological pH range from concentrated dispersions of swollen, hollow, polymer-based particles cross-linked with either cystamine (CYS) or 3,3'-dithiodipropionic acid dihydrazide (DTP). A linear relationship between particle swelling ratios, gel elasticity, and ductility was observed. The PMMA-AA gels with lower AA contents feature lower swelling ratios, mechanical strengths, and ductilities. Increasing the swelling ratio (e.g., through increasing AA content) decreased the intraparticle elasticity; however, intershell contact and gel elasticity were found to increase. The mechanical properties and performance of the gels were tuneable upon varying the copolymers' compositions and the structure of the cross-linker. Compared to PMMA-AA/CYS, the PMMA-AA/DTP gels were more elastic and ductile. The biodegradability and cytotoxicity of the new hollow particle gels were tested for the first time and related to their composition, mechanical properties, and morphology. The new PMMA-AA/CYS and PMMA-AA/DTP gels have shown good biocompatibility, biodegradability, strength, and interconnected porosity and therefore have good potential as a tissue repair agent.

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