Authors Heida, T. ; Otto, O. ; Biedenweg, D. ; Hauck, N. ; Thiele, J.
Title Microfluidic fabrication of click chemistry-mediated hyaluronic acid microgels: A bottom-up material guide to tailor a microgel's physicochemical and mechanical properties
Date 24.09.2020
Number 58867
Abstract The demand for tailored, micrometer-scaled biomaterials in cell biology and (cell-free) biotechnology has led to the development of tunable microgel systems based on natural polymers, such as hyaluronic acid (HA). To precisely tailor their physicochemical and mechanical properties and thus to address the need for well-defined microgel systems, in this study, a bottom-up material guide is presented that highlights the synergy between highly selective bio-orthogonal click chemistry strategies and the versatility of a droplet microfluidics (MF)-assisted microgel design. By employing MF, microgels based on modified HA-derivates and homobifunctional poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG)-crosslinkers are prepared via three different types of click reaction: Diels–Alder [4 + 2] cycloaddition, strain-promoted azide-alkyne cycloaddition (SPAAC), and UV-initiated thiol–ene reaction. First, chemical modification strategies of HA are screened in-depth. Beyond the microfluidic processing of HA-derivates yielding monodisperse microgels, in an analytical study, we show that their physicochemical and mechanical properties—e.g., permeability, (thermo)stability, and elasticity—can be systematically adapted with respect to the type of click reaction and PEG-crosslinker concentration. In addition, we highlight the versatility of our HA-microgel design by preparing non-spherical microgels and introduce, for the first time, a selective, hetero-trifunctional HA-based microgel system with multiple binding sites. As a result, a holistic material guide is provided to tailor fundamental properties of HA-microgels for their potential application in cell biology and (cell-free) biotechnology.
Publisher Polymers
Wikidata Q98385112
Citation Polymers 12 (2020) 1760

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