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Polymers 2016, 8(11), 404;

Thixotropic Supramolecular Pectin-Poly(Ethylene Glycol) Methacrylate (PEGMA) Hydrogels

School of Science, Monash University Malaysia, Subang Jaya 47500, Malaysia
Institute of Materials Research and Engineering (IMRE), A*STAR (Agency for Science, Technology and Research), Singapore 138634, Singapore
Faculty of Science, Health, Education and Engineering, University of the Sunshine Coast, Sunshine Coast, QLD 4558, Australia
Department of Materials Science and Engineering, National University of Singapore, Singapore 117576, Singapore
Singapore Eye Research Institute, Singapore 168751, Singapore
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Alexander Böker
Received: 2 October 2016 / Revised: 7 November 2016 / Accepted: 10 November 2016 / Published: 18 November 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Young Talents in Polymer Science)
Full-Text   |   PDF [5008 KB, uploaded 18 November 2016]   |  


Pectin is an anionic, water-soluble polymer predominantly consisting of covalently 1,4-linked α-d-galacturonic acid units. This naturally occurring, renewable and biodegradable polymer is underutilized in polymer science due to its insolubility in organic solvents, which renders conventional polymerization methods impractical. To circumvent this problem, cerium-initiated radical polymerization was utilized to graft methoxy-poly(ethylene glycol) methacrylate (mPEGMA) onto pectin in water. The copolymers were characterized by 1H nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR), Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy and thermogravimetric analysis (TGA), and used in the formation of supramolecular hydrogels through the addition of α-cyclodextrin (α-CD) to induce crosslinking. These hydrogels possessed thixotropic properties; shear-thinning to liquid upon agitation but settling into gels at rest. In contrast to most of the other hydrogels produced through the use of poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG)-grafted polymers, the pectin-PEGMA/α-CD hydrogels were unaffected by temperature changes. View Full-Text
Keywords: pectin; poly(ethylene glycol) methacrylate; cerium; α-cyclodextrin; supramolecular hydrogel pectin; poly(ethylene glycol) methacrylate; cerium; α-cyclodextrin; supramolecular hydrogel

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Chan, S.Y.; Choo, W.S.; Young, D.J.; Loh, X.J. Thixotropic Supramolecular Pectin-Poly(Ethylene Glycol) Methacrylate (PEGMA) Hydrogels. Polymers 2016, 8, 404.

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