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Amino acids have emerged as a sustainable source for the design of functional polymers. Besides their wide availability, especially their high degree of biocompatibility makes them appealing for a broad range of applications in the biomedical research field. In addition to these favorable characteristics, the versatility of reactive functional groups in amino acids (i.e., carboxylic acids, amines, thiols, and hydroxyl groups) makes them suitable starting materials for various polymerization approaches, which include step- and chain-growth reactions. This review aims to provide an overview of strategies to incorporate amino acids into polymers. To this end, it focuses on the preparation of polymerizable monomers from amino acids, which yield main chain or side chain-functionalized polymers. Furthermore, postpolymerization modification approaches for polymer side chain functionalization are discussed. Amino acids are presented as a versatile platform for the development of polymers with tailored properties.
- amino acids
- reversible deactivation radical polymerization
- ring-opening polymerization
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