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Improving the Folding of Supramolecular Copolymers by Controlling the Assembly Pathway Complexity

A family of amphiphilic, heterograft copolymers containing hydrophilic, hydrophobic, and supramolecular units based on Jeffamine M-1000, dodecylamine, and benzene-1,3,5-tricarboxamide (BTA) motifs, respectively, was prepared via a postfunctionalization approach. The folding of the copolymers in water into nanometer-sized particles was analyzed by a combination of dynamic and static light scattering, circular dichroism spectroscopy, and small-angle neutron scattering. The sample preparation protocol was crucial for obtaining reproducible and consistent results, showing that only full control over the structure and pathway complexity will afford the desired folded structure, a phenomenon similar to protein folding. The results revealed that relatively small changes in the polymer’s graft composition strongly affected the intra- versus intermolecular assembly processes. Depending on the amount of the hydrophobic grafts based on either dodecyl or BTA groups, pronounced behavioral differences were observed for...

Authors:   Gijs M. ter Huurne; Lafayette N. J. de Windt; Yiliu Liu; E. W. Meijer; Ilja K. Voets; Anja R. A. Palmans
Journal:   Macromolecules
Year:   2017
DOI:   10.1021/acs.macromol.7b01769
Publication date:   19-Oct-2017
Facts, background information, dossiers
  • particles
  • neutron scattering
  • controlling
  • benzene
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