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Application of asymmetric flow field-flow fractionation (AF4) and multiangle light scattering (MALS) for the evaluation of changes in the product molar mass during PVP-b-PAMPS synthesis

Fuentes, Catalina, Castillo, Joel, Vila, Jose, Nilsson, Lars
Analytical and bioanalytical chemistry 2018 v.410 no.16 pp. 3757-3767
detectors, drugs, fractionation, light scattering, molecular weight, polymers, refractive index
The use of polymers for the delivery of drugs has increased dramatically in the last decade. To ensure the desired properties and functionality of such substances, adequate characterization in terms of the molar mass (M) and size is essential. The aim of this study was to evaluate the changes in the M and size of PVP-b-PAMPS when the amounts of the synthesis reactants in the two-step radical reaction were varied. The determination of the M and size distributions was performed by an asymmetric flow field-flow fractionation (AF4) system connected to multiangle light scattering (MALS) and differential refractive index (dRI) detectors. The results show that the M of the polymers varies depending on the relative amounts of the reactants and that AF4-MALS-dRI is a powerful characterization technique for analyzing polymers. Using AF4, it was possible to separate the product of the first radical reaction (PVP-CTA) into two populations. The first population had an elongated, rod-like or random coil conformation, and the second had a conformation corresponding to homogeneous spheres or a microgel structure. PVP-b-PAMPS had only one population, which had a rod-like conformation. The molar masses of PVP-CTA and PVP-b-PAMPS found in this study were higher than those reported in previous studies.