|Name||Mrs. Taylor Jenkins|
|Organization or Institution||University of Florida|
Polypeptide Polymerization Induced Self-Assembly (PPPISA)
Taylor A. Jenkins, Brooke E. Barnes, Kyle C. Bentz, Daniel A. Savin
University of Florida
There is a widespread acceptance for “smart” materials - or materials that undergo some type of change in response to an external stimulus - due to their multitude of applications in the biomedical field. Many of these materials can be fabricated from block copolymer assemblies which undergo a morphology transition when one or more external factors are varied. The methodology by which these materials are prepared is often complicated with multiple steps and arduous solution processing. An emerging technique called Polymerization Induced Self-Assembly (PISA) is a facile route for preparation of well-defined block copolymer nanostructures in which a multitude of morphologies can be obtained by varying the relative volume fraction of the hydrophilic block. Various types of nanostructures have been prepared utilizing the PISA technique, which are responsive to light, pH, temperature, etc. If a polypeptide with an ionizable side chain is on the corona of the assembly, a change in solution pH will drive a morphology transition of the assembly due to the change in secondary structure of the polypeptide. It is hypothesized that incorporation of pH-responsive moieties, such as poly(glutamic acid), into the block copolymers will allow for sharp control over morphological transitions due to the pH-dependent secondary structure of the polypeptide. If a polypeptide is in the core of the assembly, it is hypothesized that gels will form because of the interactions among the polypeptide side chains and main chains. These types of structures offer biocompatible, pH-controllable materials for applications in biosensing, biomimetics, and cargo delivery vehicles.