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Polymers 2018, 10(11), 1263; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym10111263

Study of Physical and Degradation Properties of 3D-Printed Biodegradable, Photocurable Copolymers, PGSA-co-PEGDA and PGSA-co-PCLDA

1
Department of Chemical Engineering, National Tsing Hua University, Hsinchu 30013, Taiwan
2
Department of Biomedical Engineering and Environment Sciences, National Tsing Hua University, Hsinchu 30013, Taiwan
3
Department of Mechanical Engineering, National Taiwan University of Science and Technology, Taipei 10607, Taiwan
4
R&D Center for Membrane Technology, Chun Yuan Christian University, Taoyuan 32023, Taiwan
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 15 October 2018 / Revised: 5 November 2018 / Accepted: 9 November 2018 / Published: 13 November 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Smart Polymers)
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Abstract

As acrylated polymers become more widely used in additive manufacturing, their potential applications toward biomedicine also raise the demand for biodegradable, photocurable polymeric materials. Polycaprolactone diacrylate (PCLDA) and poly(ethylene glycol) diacrylate (PEGDA) are two popular choices of materials for stereolithography (SLA) and digital light processing additive manufacturing (DLP-AM), and have been applied to many biomedical related research. However, both materials are known to degrade at a relatively low rate in vivo, limiting their applications in biomedical engineering. In this work, biodegradable, photocurable copolymers are introduced by copolymerizing PCLDA and/or PEGDA with poly(glycerol sebacate) acrylate (PGSA) to form a network polymer. Two main factors are discussed: the effect of degree of acrylation in PGSA and the weight ratio between the prepolymers toward the mechanical and degradation properties. It is found that by blending prepolymers with various degree of acrylation and at various weight ratios, the viscosity of the prepolymers remains stable, and are even more 3D printable than pure substances. The formation of various copolymers yielded a database with selectable Young’s moduli between 0.67–10.54 MPa, and the overall degradation rate was significantly higher than pure substance. In addition, it is shown that copolymers fabricated by DLP-AM fabrication presents higher mechanical strength than those fabricated via direct UV exposure. With the tunable mechanical and degradation properties, the photocurable, biodegradable copolymers are expected to enable a wider application of additive manufacturing toward tissue engineering. View Full-Text
Keywords: biodegradable polymer; photocurable polymer; additive manufacturing; digital light processing; poly(glycerol sebacate) acrylate; polycaprolactone diacrylate; poly(ethylene glycol) diacrylate biodegradable polymer; photocurable polymer; additive manufacturing; digital light processing; poly(glycerol sebacate) acrylate; polycaprolactone diacrylate; poly(ethylene glycol) diacrylate
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

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Chen, J.-Y.; Hwang, J.V.; Ao-Ieong, W.-S.; Lin, Y.-C.; Hsieh, Y.-K.; Cheng, Y.-L.; Wang, J. Study of Physical and Degradation Properties of 3D-Printed Biodegradable, Photocurable Copolymers, PGSA-co-PEGDA and PGSA-co-PCLDA. Polymers 2018, 10, 1263.

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