New Design of Thiol-Responsive Degradable Polylactide-Based Block Copolymer Micelles

Authors

  • Alexander Cunningham,

    1. Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry and Centre for Nanoscience Research (CENR), Concordia University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada H4B 1R6
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  • Jung Kwon Oh

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry and Centre for Nanoscience Research (CENR), Concordia University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada H4B 1R6
    • Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry and Centre for Nanoscience Research (CENR), Concordia University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada H4B 1R6.
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Abstract

A new design to synthesize thiol-responsive degradable polylactide (PLA)-based micelles having a disulfide linkage in the middle of triblock copolymers is reported. They were synthesized by a new method that centers on the use of a disulfide-labeled diol as an initiator for ring-opening polymerization, followed by controlled radical polymerization. These well-controlled copolymers with monomodal and narrow molecular weight distribution (Mw/Mn < 1.15) self-assembled to form aqueous micellar aggregates with disulfide-containing PLA cores, which is not toxic to cells. Central disulfide linkages were cleaved in response to thiols; such thiol-triggered degradation enhanced the release of encapsulated anticancer drugs.

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