In this work, the preparation of poly(lactic acid) (PLA)-based degradable nanoparticles (NPs) with tunable hydrophobicity and degradation kinetics via starved emulsion free-radical polymerization is studied. The synthesis of macromonomers, constituted of a tunable number of lactic acid units functionalized with 2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate (HEMA), has been performed via bulk ring opening polymerization (ROP) of L, L-lactide catalyzed with 2-ethylhexanoic acid tin (II) salt. Macromonomers were characterized through SEC, NMR, and FTIR and are subsequently polymerized through monomer-starved semi-batch emulsion polymerization (MSSEP). The effect on the polymerization process of various emulsifiers on the final diameter and particle size distribution has been studied. The resulting PLA-based NPs are characterized by a narrow size distribution and a small particle size, down to 25 nm. Finally, a degradation study of selected NPs has been carried out to verify their degradability in aqueous media. It has been demonstrated the complete degradability of these PLA-based NPs which occurs upon the hydrolysis of the PLA pendant chains leaving poly-HEMA chains, which, being hydrophilic causes the NPs to dissolve in the aqueous suspension. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Polym Sci Part A: Polym Chem, 2012
If you can't find a tool you're looking for, please click the link at the top of the page to "Go to old article view". Alternatively, view our Knowledge Base articles for additional help. Your feedback is important to us, so please let us know if you have comments or ideas for improvement.