Lookup NU author(s): Dr Osama El-Zubir
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In this paper, mechanically strong organic–inorganic nanocomposite (NC) gradient hydrogels were successfully prepared by the in situ polymerization of acrylamide (Am) and N,N-dimethyl aminoethyl methacrylate (DMAEMA) using an electrophoresis method. Due to its specific colloidal properties, LAPONITE® showed directional movement in direct-current (DC) electric field and thus formed a gradient distribution in the hydrogel. The concentration gradient of LAPONITE® was characterized by UV-vis absorption, FTIR and TGA. The network structures of lyophilized gradient hydrogels were observed from SEM images. The TEM morphology indicated that LAPONITE® had a good gradient dispersion in the NC gradient hydrogel. As a physical crosslinker, LAPONITE® can regulate the cross-linking density of the hydrogel, thus affecting its mechanical properties. The NC gradient hydrogel exhibited a high mechanical strength (a gradient tensile strength ranging from 43.4 to 135.3 kPa and a gradient compression strength ranging from 116 kPa to 1100 kPa, depending on the distance from the anode). This work provided a facile method to develop NC gradient hydrogels with improved mechanical performance. The NC gradient hydrogels can be used as potential candidates in the field of biological and chemical materials.
Author(s): Mostegel FH, Ducker RE, Rieger PH, El-Zubir O, Xia S, Radl SV, Edler M, Cartron ML, Hunter CN, Leggett GJ, Griesser T
Publication type: Article
Publication status: Published
Journal: Journal of Materials Chemistry B: Materials for biology and medicine
Print publication date: 07/06/2015
Online publication date: 01/05/2015
Acceptance date: 30/04/2015
ISSN (print): 2050-750X
ISSN (electronic): 2050-7518
Publisher: Royal Society of Chemistry
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