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Amphiphilic fluorous random copolymer self‐assembly for encapsulation of a fluorinated agrochemical

Ko, Jeong Hoon, Bhattacharya, Arvind, Terashima, Takaya, Sawamoto, Mitsuo, Maynard, Heather D.
Journal of polymer science 2019 v.57 no.3 pp. 352-359
agrochemicals, composite polymers, encapsulation, hydrophilicity, hydrophobicity, nanoparticles, polyethylene glycol, trehalose
Amphiphilic self‐folding random copolymers exhibit different solution behaviors depending on the identity of the hydrophobic/hydrophilic units. Herein, it is demonstrated that changing the hydrophilic unit from poly(ethylene glycol) to the sugar trehalose causes increased discrepancy in the polarity difference with a fluorinated hydrophobic segment and changes the aggregation state of the polymer in water. The PEG‐fluorinated and trehalose/PEG‐fluorinated amphiphilic random copolymers were the most efficient at encapsulating a fluorinated agrochemical. The small‐molecule agrochemical exerts a strong influence on the self‐assembly of the polymers, demonstrating that fluorous interactions result in not only intramolecular self‐folding behavior but also intermolecular polymer association to form well‐defined nanoparticles. © 2018 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J. Polym. Sci., Part A: Polym. Chem. 2019, 57, 352–359