From thermoplastic elastomers to designed biomaterials



This highlight is about my metamorphosis from a cationic polymerization chemist to a biomaterialist (no pun intended) and some of the main events on the road. My earlier career faded away with the discovery of living cationic polymerizations, chronicled in my 1999 highlight, but it also put me on the road to designed biomaterials. My new career started with, and still focuses on, the creation of new polymeric architectures, mainly by cationic techniques, for toughened bone cements, injectable intervertebral discs, nonclogging artificial blood vessels, and amphiphilic networks for controlled drug delivery and immunoisolatory membranes. The enormous complexities of immunoisolation of pancreatic islets are now center stage, and lately we have been using all kinds of techniques to make unique membranes to correct type 1 diabetes. © 2005 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Polym Sci Part A: Polym Chem 43: 2951–2963, 2005