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Influence of particle size and fluid fraction on rheological and extrusion properties of crosslinked hyaluronic acid hydrogel dispersions

Authors

  • Andréa Arruda Martins Shimojo,

    1. Department of Engineering of Materials and of Bioprocesses, School of Chemical Engineering, University of Campinas (UNICAMP), 13083-970 Campinas, SP, Brazil
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  • Aline Mara Barbosa Pires,

    1. Department of Engineering of Materials and of Bioprocesses, School of Chemical Engineering, University of Campinas (UNICAMP), 13083-970 Campinas, SP, Brazil
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  • Lucimara Gaziola de la Torre,

    1. Department of Engineering of Materials and of Bioprocesses, School of Chemical Engineering, University of Campinas (UNICAMP), 13083-970 Campinas, SP, Brazil
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  • Maria Helena Andrade Santana

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Engineering of Materials and of Bioprocesses, School of Chemical Engineering, University of Campinas (UNICAMP), 13083-970 Campinas, SP, Brazil
    • Biotechnological Processes Department, School of Chemical Engineering, State University of Campinas (UNICAMP), 13083-970 Campinas, SP, Brazil
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Abstract

Crosslinked hyaluronic acid (HA) hydrogels are widely used in gel/HA fluid formulations as a viscosupplement to treat joint diseases; thus, it is important to characterize these hydrogels in terms of their particle size and to investigate the effects of the gel/fluid mixtures on their rheological properties and extrusion force. Hydrogels previously crosslinked with divinyl sulfone were sheared in an Ultra-Turrax unit to produce particles with mean diameters ranging from 20 to 200 μm. Hydrogels with 75–100 μm mean diameters were also evaluated in dispersions containing a 20–40% mass fraction of HA fluid. The mean diameters were measured by laser light scattering and the rheological behavior was determined by oscillatory and steady measurements in parallel plate geometry. The HA hydrogels exhibited the typical behavior of so-called weak gels, as analyzed by the storage and loss moduli G′ and G″, respectively. The viscoelasticity, the viscosity, and the extrusion force increased with the hydrogel particle size. The fluid phase dispersions decreased both moduli. At 40% fluid fraction, the gel characteristics were lost and the dispersion behaved as a fluid. Based on these results, the particle size and HA fluid fraction in hydrogel dispersions may be optimized to develop more efficient viscosupplement formulations. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J. Appl. Polym. Sci., 2013

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