Digital light processing-3D printing of thermoset materials with high biodegradability from amino acid-derived acrylamide monomers

Abstract

Six acrylamide resins, derived from l-phenylalanine and l-leucine, are designed for application in digital light processing (DLP) printers to obtain biodegradable thermoset polymers. The acrylamide copolymers are prepared under light irradiation at 405 nm and thermal post-curing processes. Low molecular weight poly(ethylene glycol)diacrylate (PEGDA) and N,N-dimethylacrylamide (DMAM), both liquid resins, are used as co-monomers and diluents for the amino acid-derived acrylamide solubilization. The presence of two phenylalanine units and two ester groups in the acrylamide monomer accuses a fast degradation rate in hydrolytic medium in 90 days. The residual products leached in the aqueous media prove to be non-cytotoxic, when 3D-printed samples are cultured with osteoblast cells (MG63), which represents an advantage for the safe disposal of printer waste materials. The scaled-up pieces derived from l-phenylalanine and diethylene glycol, as amino acid-derived acrylamide (named compound C), PEGDA and DMAM, present high dimensional stability after DLP printing of complex structures used as testing samples. Layers of 50 µm of thickness are well cohesive having isotropic behavior, as demonstrated with tensile-strain measurements performed in X–Y–Z (plane) directions. The compound C, which contains phenylalanine amino acid, reveals a promising potential to replace non-biodegradable acrylate polymers used in prototyping systems.Postprint (author's final draft

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