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“Near Perfect” Amphiphilic Conetwork Based on End-Group Cross-Linking of Polydimethylsiloxane Triblock Copolymer via Atom Transfer Radical Polymerization

Xu, Jianfeng, Qiu, Ming, Ma, Bomou, He, Chunju
ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces 2014 v.6 no.17 pp. 15283-15290
biocompatibility, composite polymers, crosslinking, encapsulation, microstructure, molecular weight, oxygen, permeability, polydimethylsiloxane, polymerization, strength (mechanics), transmission electron microscopy, water uptake
Novel amphiphilic conetworks (APCNs) with uniform channel size were synthesized through end-cross-linking of well-defined amphiphilic triblock copolymers via atom transfer radical polymerization (ATRP). A new ditelechelic polydimethylsiloxane macroinitiator was synthesized to initiate the polymerization of N,N-dimethylacrylamide. The resulting triblock copolymers show well-defined molecular weight with narrow polydisperisty, which are telechelic modified by allylamine and fully cross-linked with polyhydrosiloxanes through hydrosilylation. Transmission electron microscopy shows that the APCN has the behavior of microphase separation with small channel size and uniform phase domain. The resulting APCNs with idealized microstructure exhibit a combination of excellent properties, i.e., superhigh mechanical strength (4 ± 1 MPa) and elongation ratio (175 ± 25%), outstanding oxygen permeability (350 ± 150 barrers), a high water uptake property, and excellent biocompatibility, indicating that in this way, “near perfect” networks are obtained. These results are better than those reported in the literature, suggesting a promising semipermeable barrier for islet encapsulation in relative biomaterial fields.