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Crosslinking neat ultrathin films and nanofibres of pH-responsive poly(acrylic acid) by UV radiation

Gestos, Adrian, Whitten, Philip G., Spinks, Geoffrey M. and Wallace, Gordon G. 2010, Crosslinking neat ultrathin films and nanofibres of pH-responsive poly(acrylic acid) by UV radiation, Soft matter, vol. 6, no. 5, pp. 1045-1052, doi: 10.1039/b923831j.

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Title Crosslinking neat ultrathin films and nanofibres of pH-responsive poly(acrylic acid) by UV radiation
Author(s) Gestos, Adrian
Whitten, Philip G.
Spinks, Geoffrey M.
Wallace, Gordon G.
Journal name Soft matter
Volume number 6
Issue number 5
Start page 1045
End page 1052
Total pages 8
Publisher R S C Publications
Place of publication Cambridge, England
Publication date 2010
ISSN 1744-683X
1744-6848
Keyword(s) artificial muscle
biological applications
chemical crosslinks
controlled drug release
cross-link densities
cross-link reactions
cross-linking molecule
cross-linking process
crosslinks
dry and wet
electrospuns
nanofibres
pH-responsive
poly(acrylic acid )
polyacrylic acids
polyelectrolyte hydrogels
radiation Exposure
scaffolds for tissue engineering
thermal crosslinking
thick samples
ultra-thin
UV radiation
wound dressings
Summary Electrospun polyelectrolyte hydrogel nanofibres are being developed for many applications including artificial muscles, scaffolds for tissue engineering, wound dressings and controlled drug release. For electrospun polyelectrolytes, a post-spinning crosslinking process is necessary for producing a hydrogel. Typically, radiation or thermal crosslinking routines are employed that require multifunctional crosslinking molecules and crosslink reaction initiators (free radical producers). Here, ultraviolet subtype-C (UVC) radiation was employed to crosslink neat poly(acrylic acid) (PAA) nanofibres and films to different crosslink densities. Specific crosslink initiators or crosslinking molecules are not necessary in this fast and simple process providing an advantage for biological applications. Scanning probe microscopy was used for the first time to measure the dry and wet dimensions of hydrogel nanofibres. The diameters of the swollen fibres decrease monotonically with increasing UVC radiation time. The fibres could be reversibly swollen/contracted by treatment with solutions of varying pH, demonstrating their potential as artificial muscles. The surprising success of UVC radiation exposure to achieve chemical crosslinks without a specific initiator molecule exploits the ultrathin dimensions of the PAA samples and will not work with relatively thick samples.
Language eng
DOI 10.1039/b923831j
Field of Research 100712 Nanoscale Characterisation
100708 Nanomaterials
091209 Polymers and Plastics
Socio Economic Objective 970109 Expanding Knowledge in Engineering
HERDC Research category C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30047920

Document type: Journal Article
Collection: Institute for Frontier Materials
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