Synthesis of biodegradable hydrogel nanoparticles for bioapplications using inverse miniemulsion RAFT polymerization

Marco Antonio M Oliveira, Cyrille Boyer, Marcio Nele, José Carlos Pinto, Per B Zetterlund, Thomas P Davis

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41 Citations (Scopus)


We report the synthesis of biodegradable hydrogel nanoparticles using a RAFT inverse miniemulsion cross-linking polymerization process with 2-(dimethylamino)ethyl methacrylate (DMAEMA) as monomer. The experimental conditions were optimized to yield a colloidally stable miniemulsion polymerization, which required protonation of DMAEMA using aqueous hydrogen chloride to ensure minimal partitioning to the continuous phase (cyclohexane). The nanoparticles were cross-linked using a disulfide cross-linker, thereby enabling subsequent degradation of the polymer network to its constituent primary chains by exposure to a reductive environment. The molecular weight distributions of the constituent primary chains were consistent with satisfactory control/livingness during the polymerization. These biodegradable hydrogel nanoparticles may have potential application as nanocarriers for encapsulation and controlled release of siRNA. 

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7167-7175
Number of pages9
Issue number18
Publication statusPublished - 27 Sep 2011
Externally publishedYes

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