Chemical Design of Responsive Microgels

Volume 234 of the series Advances in Polymer Science pp 65-93


Nano- and Microgels Through Addition Reactions of Functional Oligomers and Polymers

  • Krystyna Albrecht
  • , Martin MoellerAffiliated withDWI e.V. and Institute of Technical and Macromolecular Chemistry, RWTH Aachen University
  • , Juergen GrollAffiliated withDWI e.V. and Institute of Technical and Macromolecular Chemistry, RWTH Aachen University Email author 

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Nano- and Microgels are predominantly prepared using radical polymerization techniques. This chapter reviews alternative approaches to microgel preparation based on addition reactions of functional oligomers and polymers. This allows preparation of microgels under physiological conditions and in the presence of biologically active molecules without affecting their function. This method is therefore predominantly used to synthesize microgels for biomedical applications. Different crosslinking chemistries that have been used in this context are presented and discussed with regard to reaction conditions and stability of the reaction product. Microgels that have been prepared by these techniques are divided into two groups. Natural polymers used for the preparation of microgels are described first, followed by artificial prepolymers that are suitable for the preparation of microgels. The different preparation methods as well as the resulting microgels and their properties are presented and discussed.


Addition reactions Disulfide bridges Drug delivery Michael addition Microgel Prepolymers