Synthesis and self-assembly of brush-type poly[poly(ethylene glycol)methyl ether methacrylate]-block-poly(pentafluorostyrene) amphiphilic diblock copolymers in aqueous solution

Benghoon Tan, Hazrat Hussain, Ye Liu, Chaobin He, Thomas Paul Davis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

61 Citations (Scopus)


Well-defined fluorinated brush-like amphiphilic diblock copolymers of poly[poly(ethylene glycol)methyl ether methacrylate] (P(PEGMA)) and poly(pentafluorostyrene) (PPFS) have been successfully synthesized via atom transfer radical polymerization (ATRP). The self-assembly behavior of these polymers in aqueous solutions was studied using 1H NMR, fluorescence spectrometry, static and dynamic light scattering and transmission electron microscopy techniques. The micellar structure comprised of PPFS as the core and brush-like (hydrophobic main chain and hydrophilic branches) polymers as the coronas. The hydrodynamic radius (Rh) of the micelles in aqueous solution was in the nanometer range, independent of the polymer concentration, consistent with a closed association model. Diblock copolymers with a longer P(PEGMA) block formed micelles with smaller Rh and lower aggregation numbers consistent with an improved solubilization of the core. The micelles possessed a thick hydration layer as verified by the ratio of the radius of gyration, Rg to the hydrodynamic radius, Rh. The aggregation number and ratio of Rg to Rh were observed to increase with temperature (20-50 ?C), while theRh of the micelle decreased slightly over the same temperature range. An increase in temperature induced the brush-like PEG segments in the corona to dehydrate and shrink while forming micelles with larger aggregation numbers.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2361 - 2368
Number of pages8
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2010
Externally publishedYes

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