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Hydroxylated poly(N-isopropylacrylamide) as functional thermoresponsive materials.
In this study, we developed a poly(N-isopropylacrylamide)-based thermoresponsive polymeric material with a high content of hydroxyl groups. We newly designed the functional monomer, N-(2-hydroxyisopropyl)acrylamide (HIPAAm), considering maintaining the continuous and repeated structure of the isopropylamide group after copolymerization and the monomer reactivity ratios. The thermoresponsive polymer was derived by conventional radical copolymerization of HIPAAm with N-isopropylacrylamide (NIPAAm) in high yield. Estimation of monomer reactivity ratios, r(1) and r(2), supported the almost random sequence of the comonomers. The obtained copolymers showed a very sensitive phase transition and/or separation in response to temperature in aqueous media although they have many hydrophilic parts, and their thermoresponsive behavior was not affected by the pH. Furthermore, the cloud points of these copolymers closely depended on the HIPAAm content and could be easily controlled by adding salts. HIPAAm is expected to regulate the phase transition and/or separation temperature of the NIPAAm-based copolymers while maintaining their desirable sensitive thermoresponse. Differential scanning calorimetric analysis showed that dehydration of the polymer chains occurring in phase transition became incomplete with increasing HIPAAm content. Moreover, it was found that poly(NIPAAm-co-HIPAAm) having a high content of the HIPAAm unit showed liquid-liquid phase separation involving coacervation. The sizes of the coacervate droplets were relatively monodisperse and very minimal. Poly(NIPAAm-co-HIPAAm) is valuable for use in biomedical fields such as bioseparation.
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Pub Type(s)Journal Article
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't