Tuning solution polymer properties by binary water–ethanol solvent mixtures

R. Hoogenboom, H.M.L. Thijs, D. Wouters, S. Höppener, U.S. Schubert

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Samenvatting

The solubility of polymers can be significantly altered by the use of solvent mixtures. The solvent composition also effects the self-assembly properties of amphiphilic copolymers. In addition, water–ethanol mixtures are known to exhibit abnormal physicochemical properties due to the presence of hydration shells around the ethanol molecules, while at the same time both solvents have very low toxicity. However, the solution properties of amphiphilic copolymers in water– ethanol mixtures have been scarcely studied. Here we show that the solution polymer properties of amphiphilic copoly(2-oxazoline)s can be significantly altered in binary water–ethanol mixtures resulting in increased solubility, tuneable lower critical solution temperatures as well as polymer– solvent combinations with both a LCST followed by an UCST and improved dispersion stability. Surprisingly, it was found that polymers insoluble in both ethanol and water could be dissolved in water–ethanol mixtures, opening the way to novel formulations for drug delivery or personal care applications. Our results represent a straightforward method for tuning solution polymer properties without the synthetic efforts that are generally required to change the copolymer composition and properties
Originele taal-2Engels
Pagina's (van-tot)103-107
TijdschriftSoft Matter
Volume4
Nummer van het tijdschrift1
DOI's
StatusGepubliceerd - 2008

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