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Keywords:

  • bioconjugation;
  • oligonucleotide;
  • protein;
  • radical polymerization;
  • reversible addition-fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT);
  • telechelics

Abstract

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End group modification of polymers prepared by reversible addition–fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) polymerization was accomplished by conversion of trithiocarbonate into reactive functions able to conjugate easily with biomolecules or bioactive functionality. Polymers were prepared by RAFT, and subsequent aminolysis led to sulfhydryl-terminated polymers that reacted in situ with an excess of dithiopyridyl disulfide to yield pyridyl disulfide-terminated macromolecules or in the presence of ene to yield functional polymers. In the first route, the pyridyl disulfide end groups allowed coupling with oligonucleotide and peptide. The second approach exploited thiol–ene chemistry to couple polymers and model compounds such as carbohydrate and biotin with high yield.