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Modification of polysulfones by click chemistry: Amphiphilic graft copolymers and their protein adsorption and cell adhesion properties



Well-defined amphiphilic graft copolymer with hydrophobic polysulfone (PSU) backbone and hydrophilic poly(acrylic acid) (PAA) side chains were synthesized and characterized. For this purpose, commercially available PSU was converted to azido-functionalized polymer (PSU-N3) by successive chloromethylation and azidation processes. Independently, poly(tert-butyl acrylate) (PtBA) with an alkyne-end-group is obtained by using suitable initiator in atom transfer radical polymerization (ATRP). Then, this polymer was successfully grafted onto PSU-N3 by click chemistry to yield polysulfone-graft-poly(tert-butyl acrylate), (PSU-g-PtBA). Finally, amphiphilic polysulfone-graft-poly(acrylic acid), (PSU-g-PAA), membranes were obtained by hydrolyzing precursor the PSU-g-PtBA membranes in trifluoroacetic acid. The final polymer and intermediates at various stages were characterized by 1H NMR, FTIR, GPC, and SEM analyses. Protein adsorption and eukaryotic and prokaryotic cell adhesion on PSU-g-PAA were studied and compared to those of PSU-g-PtBA and unmodified PSU. © 2010 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Polym Sci Part A: Polym Chem, 2010