Tuning Gelation Time and Morphology of Injectable Hydrogels Using Ketone–Hydrazide Cross-Linking Academic Article uri icon

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abstract

  • Injectable, covalently in situ forming hydrogels based on poly(N-isopropylacrylamide) have been designed on the basis of mixing hydrazide-functionalized nucleophilic precursor polymers with electrophilic precursor polymers functionalized with a combination of ketone (slow reacting) and aldehyde (fast reacting) functional groups. By tuning the ratio of aldehyde:ketone functional groups as well as the total number of ketone groups in the electrophilic precursor polymer, largely independent control over hydrogel properties including gelation time (from seconds to hours), degradation kinetics (from hours to months), optical transmission (from 1 to 85%), and mechanics (over nearly 1 order of magnitude) can be achieved. In addition, ketone-functionalized precursor polymers exhibit improved cytocompatibility at even extremely high concentrations relative to polymers functionalized with aldehyde groups, even at 4-fold higher functional group densities. Overall, increasing the ketone content of the precursor copolymers can result in in situ-gellable hydrogels with improved transparency and biocompatibility and equivalent mechanics and stimuli-responsiveness while only modestly sacrificing the speed of gel formation.

publication date

  • March 10, 2014