Poly(2-oxazoline)s: A Polymer Class with Numerous Potential Applications


  • Richard Hoogenboom Dr.

    1. DWI an RWTH Aachen, Pauwelsstrasse 8, 52056 Aachen (Germany)
    2. Institute for Molecules and Materials, Radboud University Nijmegen, Heyendaalseweg 135, 6525 AJ Nijmegen (The Netherlands), Fax: (+49) 241-80-23301
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The living cationic ring-opening polymerization of 2-oxazolines has been studied in great detail since its discovery in 1966. The versatility of this living polymerization method allows copolymerization of a variety of 2-oxazoline monomers to give a range of tunable polymer properties that enable, for example, hydrophilic, hydrophobic, fluorophilic, as well as hard and soft materials to be obtained. However, this class of polymers was almost forgotten in the 1980s and 1990s because of their long reaction times and limited application possibilities. In the new millennium, a revival of poly(2-oxazoline)s has arisen because of their potential use as biomaterials and thermoresponsive materials, as well as the easy access to defined amphiphilic structures for (hierarchical) self-assembly. Recent developments that illustrate the potential of poly(2-oxazoline)s are discussed in this Review. In addition, the promising combination of poly(2-oxazoline)s and click chemistry is illustrated.