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Polymers 2011, 3(1), 65-99; doi:10.3390/polym3010065

Degradable Poly(ester amide)s for Biomedical Applications

Departament d'Enginyeria Química, Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya, Av. Diagonal 647, E-08028, Barcelona, Spain
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 2 November 2010 / Revised: 25 November 2010 / Accepted: 23 December 2010 / Published: 27 December 2010
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biofunctional Polymers for Medical Applications)


Poly(ester amide)s are an emerging group of biodegradable polymers that may cover both commodity and speciality applications. These polymers have ester and amide groups on their chemical structure which are of a degradable character and provide good thermal and mechanical properties. In this sense, the strong hydrogen‑bonding interactions between amide groups may counter some typical weaknesses of aliphatic polyesters like for example poly(e-caprolactone). Poly(ester amide)s can be prepared from different monomers and following different synthetic methodologies which lead to polymers with random, blocky and ordered microstructures. Properties like hydrophilic/hydrophobic ratio and biodegradability can easily be tuned. During the last decade a great effort has been made to get functionalized poly(ester amide)s by incorporation of a-amino acids with hydroxyl, carboxyl and amine pendant groups and also by incorporation of carbon-carbon double bonds in both the polymer main chain and the side groups. Specific applications of these materials in the biomedical field are just being developed and are reviewed in this work (e.g., controlled drug delivery systems, hydrogels, tissue engineering and other uses like adhesives and smart materials) together with the main families of functionalized poly(ester amide)s that have been developed to date.
Keywords: poly(ester amide)s; biodegradability; drug delivery systems poly(ester amide)s; biodegradability; drug delivery systems
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY) which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Rodriguez-Galan, A.; Franco, L.; Puiggali, J. Degradable Poly(ester amide)s for Biomedical Applications. Polymers 2011, 3, 65-99.

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