Advanced Materials

Synthesis and Peptide-Induced Degradation of Biocompatible Fibers Based on Highly Branched Poly(2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate)


  • EPSRC is thanked for a Platform grant to support CL (GR/R29260). LW acknowledges the Chinese Academy of Sciences for a one-year secondment at the University of Sheffield, UK. Cognis Performance Chemicals (Hythe, UK) are thanked for their generous supply of high purity HEMA monomer. SPA is the recipient of a five-year Royal Society-Wolfson Trust Research Merit Award. Supporting Information is available online from Wiley InterScience or from the author.


Biocompatible fibers (see figure) are prepared by electrospinning branched poly(2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate) copolymers from methanol. These copolymers contain disulfide branch sites that can be cleaved using tripeptides such as glutathione. Cleavage reduces the copolymer molecular weight substantially, leading to complete fiber dissolution.

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