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Cross-linked degradable poly(β-thioester) networks via amine-catalyzed thiol-ene click polymerization

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Marloes PeetersORCiD


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A set of binary and ternary biodegradable cross-linked poly(β- thioester) networks have been synthesized via thiol-ene Michael additions, by reacting combinations of dithiols, diacrylates and multifunctional cross-linkers. Insoluble binary thermoset networks and soluble ternary branched polymers with broad molar mass distributions are obtained in a facile manner after polymerization at room temperature for only few minutes. The networks display excellent thermal stability up to 250 °C and exhibit low glass transition temperatures. The soluble branched polymers show degradation of the polyester backbone upon chemical degradation by acidic and basic solutions. Finally, the (bio)degradability of ternary PBT polymer films is examined via quartz crystal microbalance measurements. Weight loss is measured as a function of time upon exposure to phosphate buffers at different pH. PBTs carrying apolar chain segments display surface degradation, while PBTs with more polar ethylene glycol segments allow for swelling in aqueous solution, which is reflected in concomitant surface and bulk degradation of the materials. Because of their biodegradability, these easy to synthesize poly(β-thioesters) networks are considered to be suitable candidates to use in future biomedical or ecological applications. © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Vandenbergh J, Peeters M, Kretschmer T, Wagner P, Junkers T

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Polymer

Year: 2014

Volume: 55

Issue: 16

Pages: 3525-3532

Print publication date: 05/08/2014

Online publication date: 23/05/2014

Acceptance date: 15/05/2014

ISSN (print): 0032-3861

ISSN (electronic): 1873-2291

Publisher: Elsevier Ltd


DOI: 10.1016/j.polymer.2014.05.043


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