Mechanical Reinforcement of Molecular Hydrogel by Co-assembly of Short Peptide-based Gelators with Different Aromatic Capping Groups

Authors

  • Dongxia Li,

    1. State Key Laboratory of Medicinal Chemical Biology and College of Pharmacy, Nankai University, Tianjin 300071, China
    2. Key Laboratory of Bioactive Materials, Ministry of Education, College of Life Sciences, Nankai University, Tianjin 300071, China
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  • Yang Shi,

    1. State Key Laboratory of Medicinal Chemical Biology and College of Pharmacy, Nankai University, Tianjin 300071, China
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  • Ling Wang

    Corresponding author
    1. State Key Laboratory of Medicinal Chemical Biology and College of Pharmacy, Nankai University, Tianjin 300071, China
    • State Key Laboratory of Medicinal Chemical Biology and College of Pharmacy, Nankai University, Tianjin 300071, China, Tel.: 0086-022-23502875; Fax: 0086-022-23507760

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Abstract

We demonstrated in this study that mixing two short peptide-based gelators with different aromatic capping groups would result in molecular hydrogels with enhanced mechanical property. We selected gelators of PTZ-GFFY and Nap-GFFY for the study. Both PTZ-GFFY and Nap-GFFY could independently form molecular hydrogel by a heating-cooling process. However, the mechanical property of gels of PTZ-GFFY and Nap-GFFY was relatively weak with storage moduli (G′) of about 500 and 150 Pa, respectively. A two-component gel of PTZ-GFFY and Nap-GFFY could also form by a heating-cooling process. Surprisingly, the G′ value of the two-component gel was about 5000 Pa , which was at least ten times bigger than that of each single-component gel. This is a novel and simple strategy to improve the mechanical property of molecular hydrogels.

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