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Open AccessArticle

Synthesis, Characterization and Cytotoxicity of Novel Thermoresponsive Star Copolymers of N,N′-Dimethylaminoethyl Methacrylate and Hydroxyl-Bearing Oligo(Ethylene Glycol) Methacrylate

1
Centre of Polymer and Carbon Materials, Polish Academy of Sciences, M. Curie-Sklodowskiej 34, 41-819 Zabrze, Poland
2
Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics, Medical University of Silesia, Medykow 18, 40-752 Katowice, Poland
3
Department of Chemistry, University of Leuven, Celestijnenlaan, 200F, B-3001 Leuven (Heverlee), Belgium
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Polymers 2018, 10(11), 1255; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym10111255
Received: 19 October 2018 / Revised: 7 November 2018 / Accepted: 7 November 2018 / Published: 12 November 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biocompatible Polymers)
Novel, nontoxic star copolymers of N,N-dimethylaminoethyl methacrylate (DMAEMA) and hydroxyl-bearing oligo(ethylene glycol) methacrylate (OEGMA-OH) were synthesized via atom transfer radical polymerization (ATRP) using hyperbranched poly(arylene oxindole) as the macroinitiator. Stars with molar masses from 100,000 g/mol to 257,000 g/mol and with various amounts of OEGMA-OH in the arms were prepared. As these polymers can find applications, e.g., as carriers of nucleic acids, drugs or antibacterial or antifouling agents, in this work, much attention has been devoted to exploring their solution behavior and their stimuli-responsive properties. The behavior of the stars was studied in aqueous solutions under various pH and temperature conditions, as well as in PBS buffer, in Dulbecco’s modified Eagle’s medium (DMEM) and in organic solvents for comparison. The results indicated that increasing the content of hydrophilic OEGMA-OH units in the arms up to 10 mol% increased the cloud point temperature. For the stars with an OEGMA-OH content of 10 mol%, the thermo- and pH-responsivity was switched off. Since cytotoxicity experiments have shown that the obtained stars are less toxic than homopolymer DMAEMA stars, the presented studies confirmed that the prepared polymers are great candidates for the design of various nanosystems for biomedical applications. View Full-Text
Keywords: star polymers; solution behavior; ATRP star polymers; solution behavior; ATRP
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MDPI and ACS Style

Mendrek, B.; Fus, A.; Klarzyńska, K.; Sieroń, A.L.; Smet, M.; Kowalczuk, A.; Dworak, A. Synthesis, Characterization and Cytotoxicity of Novel Thermoresponsive Star Copolymers of N,N′-Dimethylaminoethyl Methacrylate and Hydroxyl-Bearing Oligo(Ethylene Glycol) Methacrylate. Polymers 2018, 10, 1255.

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