Photoinitiated alkyne-azide click and radical cross-linking reactions for the patterning of PEG hydrogels

Rodney T. Chen, Silvia Marchesan, Richard A. Evans, Katie E Styan, Georgina Kate Such, Almar Postma, Keith M. McLean, Benjamin W. Muir, Frank Caruso

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

64 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The photolithographical patterning of hydrogels based solely on the surface immobilization and cross-linking of alkyne-functionalized poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG-tetraalkyne) is described. Photogenerated radicals as well as UV absorption by a copper chelating ligand result in the photochemical redox reduction of Cu(II) to Cu(I). This catalyzes the alkyne-azide click reaction to graft the hydrogels onto an azide-functionalized plasma polymer (N 3PP) film. The photogenerated radicals were also able to abstract hydrogen atoms from PEG-tetraalkyne to form poly(α-alkoxy) radicals. These radicals can initiate cross-linking by addition to the alkynes and intermolecular recombination to form the PEG hydrogels. Spatially controlling the two photoinitiated reactions by UV exposure through a photomask leads to surface patterned hydrogels, with thicknesses that were tunable from tens to several hundreds of nanometers. The patterned PEG hydrogels (ca. 60 μm wide lines) were capable of resisting the attachment of L929 mouse fibroblast cells, resulting in surfaces with spatially controlled cell attachment. The patterned hydrogel surface also demonstrated spatially resolved chemical functionality, as postsynthetic modification of the hydrogels was successfully carried out with azide-functionalized fluorescent dyes via subsequent alkyne-azide click reactions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)889-895
Number of pages7
JournalBiomacromolecules
Volume13
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 12 Mar 2012
Externally publishedYes

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