Investigation of the thermogelation of a promising biocompatible ABC triblock terpolymer and its comparison with pluronic F127

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Title: Investigation of the thermogelation of a promising biocompatible ABC triblock terpolymer and its comparison with pluronic F127
Authors: Constantinou, AP
Nele, V
Doutch, JJ
S. Correia, J
Moiseev, RV
Cihova, M
Gaboriau, DCA
Krell, J
Khutoryanskiy, VV
Stevens, MM
Georgiou, TK
Item Type: Journal Article
Abstract: Thermoresponsive polymers with the appropriate structure form physical networks upon changes in temperature, and they find utility in formulation science, tissue engineering, and drug delivery. Here, we report a cost-effective biocompatible alternative, namely OEGMA30015-b-BuMA26-b-DEGMA13, which forms gels at low concentrations (as low as 2% w/w); OEGMA300, BuMA, and DEGMA stand for oligo(ethylene glycol) methyl ether methacrylate (MM = 300 g mol–1), n-butyl methacrylate, and di(ethylene glycol) methyl ether methacrylate, respectively. This polymer is investigated in depth and is compared to its commercially available counterpart, Poloxamer P407 (Pluronic F127). To elucidate the differences in their macroscale gelling behavior, we investigate their nanoscale self-assembly by means of small-angle neutron scattering and simultaneously recording their rheological properties. Two different gelation mechanisms are revealed. The triblock copolymer inherently forms elongated micelles, whose length increases by temperature to form worm-like micelles, thus promoting gelation. In contrast, Pluronic F127’s micellization is temperature-driven, and its gelation is attributed to the close packing of the micelles. The gel structure is analyzed through cryogenic scanning and transmission electron microscopy. Ex vivo gelation study upon intracameral injections demonstrates excellent potential for its application to improve drug residence in the eye.
Issue Date: 14-Feb-2022
Date of Acceptance: 28-Jan-2022
DOI: 10.1021/acs.macromol.1c02123
ISSN: 0024-9297
Publisher: American Chemical Society (ACS)
Start Page: 1783
End Page: 1799
Journal / Book Title: Macromolecules
Volume: 55
Issue: 5
Copyright Statement: © 2022 American Chemical Society. . This document is the Accepted Manuscript version of a Published Work that appeared in final form in Macromolecules, after peer review and technical editing by the publisher. To access the final edited and published work see
Sponsor/Funder: Engineering & Physical Science Research Council (E
Engineering & Physical Science Research Council (E
ISIS Neutron & Muon Source
Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council
Ovarian Cancer Action
Funder's Grant Number: EP/R511547/1
Keywords: Science & Technology
Physical Sciences
Polymer Science
03 Chemical Sciences
09 Engineering
Publication Status: Published
Embargo Date: 2023-02-13
Article Number: acs.macromol.1c02123
Online Publication Date: 2022-02-14
Appears in Collections:Materials
Department of Surgery and Cancer
National Heart and Lung Institute
Faculty of Medicine
Faculty of Natural Sciences
Faculty of Engineering