Influence of side-chain length on long-term release kinetics from poly(2-oxazoline)-drug conjugate networks


Four drug-conjugated poly(2-alkyl-2-oxazoline) (PAOx) networks with different hydrophobicity were synthesized via copolymerization of either 2-methyl-, 2-ethyl-, 2-propyl- or 2-butyl-2-oxazoline with the functional monomer, 2-dec-9-enyl-2-oxazoline. The incorporation of a labile ester linkage between the polymer and the drug benazepril allowed for sustained drug release over periods of months with the release rates strongly depending on the hydrophobicity of the polymer pendant groups. Drug loading of 13 ± 2 wt% was used with 10 mol% crosslinking sites simply by tuning the thiol-ene stoichiometry. The networks exhibited negligible cell toxicity but cell repulsion was observed for hydrogels based on poly(2-methyl-2-oxazoline) and poly(2-ethyl-2-oxazoline) while those based on poly(2-n-propyl-2-oxazoline) and poly(2-n-butyl-2-oxaoline) showed cell adhesion. These results suggest that PAOx networks have great potential as drug delivery devices for long-lasting drug release applications

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