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Self-Rupturing Microcapsules


  • Ghent University is thanked for a scholarship BOF 01112403. Wim Hennink, Mies van Steenbergen, and Sophie Van Tomme are gratefully thanked for helpful discussions. Chris Vervaet and Eveline Pringels are thanked for lyophilization. Christophe Déjugnat thanks the European project “Nanocapsules” for funding. Prof. H. Möhwald helped tremendously by reading the manuscript. Supporting Information is available online from Wiley InterScience or from the author.


Self-rupturing microcapsules are prepared by layer-by-layer coating of degradable dextran-hydroxyethyl methacrylate microgels with the polyelectrolytes poly(allylamine hydrochloride) and sodium poly(styrene sulfonate). When the microgel core degrades, the swelling pressure increases and, at a critical value of the swelling pressure, the surrounding membrane suddenly ruptures (see Figure). This type of microcapsule could be very promising for pulsed drug delivery.

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