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Novel polyurethane hydrogels for biomedical applications



Polyurethane hydrogels derived from UV-curable urethane prepolymer and hydrophilic monomers were prepared and their properties were evaluated. The urethane prepolymer used in this study contained well-defined hard segments centered with a polyether-based soft segment and end-capped with methacrylate groups. The hydrophilic monomers studied were 2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate (HEMA), N-vinyl pyrrolidone, and glycerol methacrylate. Methacryloxypropyl tris (trimethysiloxy) silane (TRIS) was also used in some cases to modify properties. All composition were UV-cured and formed hydrogels after hydration. The oxygen permeabilities of the hydrogels decreased as the water contents increased and increased as the TRIS content was increased. The tear strengths and moduli decreased as the water contents of the hydrogels increased. Most compositions studied have higher oxygen permeability and tear strength than poly(HEMA) because of the presence of urethane prepolymer in the composition.

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