Molecular design of light-responsive hydrogels, for in situ generation of fast and reversible valves for microfluidic applications

J. Schiphorst, ter, S. Coleman, J.E. Stumpel, A. Ben Azouz, D. Diamond, A.P.H.J. Schenning

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Abstract

Reversible light-responsive hydrogel valves with response characteristics compatible for microfluidics have been obtained by optimization of molecular design of spiropyran photoswitches and gel composition. Self-protonating gel formulations were exploited, wherein acrylic acid was copolymerized in the hydrogel network as an internal proton donor, to achieve a swollen state of the hydrogel in water at neutral pH. Light-responsive properties were endowed upon the hydrogels by copolymerization of spiropyran chromophores, using electron withdrawing and donating groups to tune the gel-swelling and shrinkage behavior. In all cases, the shrinkage was determined by the water diffusion rate, while for the swelling the isomerization kinetics is the rate-determining step. For one hydrogel, reversible and reproducible volume changes were observed. Finally, gel-valves integrated within microfluidic channels were fabricated, allowing reversible and repeatable operation, with opening and closing of the valve in minutes.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5925-5931
JournalChemistry of Materials
Volume27
Issue number17
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2015

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Hydrogels
Hydrogel
Microfluidics
Gels
Swelling
Water
Chromophores
Isomerization
Copolymerization
Protons
Acrylics
Kinetics
Electrons
Chemical analysis
Acids
spiropyran

Cite this

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title = "Molecular design of light-responsive hydrogels, for in situ generation of fast and reversible valves for microfluidic applications",
abstract = "Reversible light-responsive hydrogel valves with response characteristics compatible for microfluidics have been obtained by optimization of molecular design of spiropyran photoswitches and gel composition. Self-protonating gel formulations were exploited, wherein acrylic acid was copolymerized in the hydrogel network as an internal proton donor, to achieve a swollen state of the hydrogel in water at neutral pH. Light-responsive properties were endowed upon the hydrogels by copolymerization of spiropyran chromophores, using electron withdrawing and donating groups to tune the gel-swelling and shrinkage behavior. In all cases, the shrinkage was determined by the water diffusion rate, while for the swelling the isomerization kinetics is the rate-determining step. For one hydrogel, reversible and reproducible volume changes were observed. Finally, gel-valves integrated within microfluidic channels were fabricated, allowing reversible and repeatable operation, with opening and closing of the valve in minutes.",
author = "{Schiphorst, ter}, J. and S. Coleman and J.E. Stumpel and {Ben Azouz}, A. and D. Diamond and A.P.H.J. Schenning",
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doi = "10.1021/acs.chemmater.5b01860",
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Molecular design of light-responsive hydrogels, for in situ generation of fast and reversible valves for microfluidic applications. / Schiphorst, ter, J.; Coleman, S.; Stumpel, J.E.; Ben Azouz, A.; Diamond, D.; Schenning, A.P.H.J.

In: Chemistry of Materials, Vol. 27, No. 17, 2015, p. 5925-5931.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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AU - Schiphorst, ter, J.

AU - Coleman, S.

AU - Stumpel, J.E.

AU - Ben Azouz, A.

AU - Diamond, D.

AU - Schenning, A.P.H.J.

PY - 2015

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N2 - Reversible light-responsive hydrogel valves with response characteristics compatible for microfluidics have been obtained by optimization of molecular design of spiropyran photoswitches and gel composition. Self-protonating gel formulations were exploited, wherein acrylic acid was copolymerized in the hydrogel network as an internal proton donor, to achieve a swollen state of the hydrogel in water at neutral pH. Light-responsive properties were endowed upon the hydrogels by copolymerization of spiropyran chromophores, using electron withdrawing and donating groups to tune the gel-swelling and shrinkage behavior. In all cases, the shrinkage was determined by the water diffusion rate, while for the swelling the isomerization kinetics is the rate-determining step. For one hydrogel, reversible and reproducible volume changes were observed. Finally, gel-valves integrated within microfluidic channels were fabricated, allowing reversible and repeatable operation, with opening and closing of the valve in minutes.

AB - Reversible light-responsive hydrogel valves with response characteristics compatible for microfluidics have been obtained by optimization of molecular design of spiropyran photoswitches and gel composition. Self-protonating gel formulations were exploited, wherein acrylic acid was copolymerized in the hydrogel network as an internal proton donor, to achieve a swollen state of the hydrogel in water at neutral pH. Light-responsive properties were endowed upon the hydrogels by copolymerization of spiropyran chromophores, using electron withdrawing and donating groups to tune the gel-swelling and shrinkage behavior. In all cases, the shrinkage was determined by the water diffusion rate, while for the swelling the isomerization kinetics is the rate-determining step. For one hydrogel, reversible and reproducible volume changes were observed. Finally, gel-valves integrated within microfluidic channels were fabricated, allowing reversible and repeatable operation, with opening and closing of the valve in minutes.

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