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Issue 10, 2009
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Unimolecular micelles based on hyperbranched polycarbohydrate cores

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Abstract

This Review article details the preparation and encapsulation–release properties of novel amphiphilic hyperbranched polymers with a micellar characteristic as a single molecule, which are referred to as “unimolecular micelles” or “unimolecular nanocapsules”. Amphiphilic hyperbranched polymers consisting of a hydrophilic hyperbranched polycarbohydrate core and hydrophobic shell possess an ability to encapsulate hydrophilic guest molecules and control the release of the encapsulated guest molecules, e.g., a biodegradable unimolecular reversed micelle consisting of a hyperbranched D-mannan core and a poly(L-lactide) shell, and the pH-sensitive unimolecular reversed micelle consisting of a hyperbranched D-glucan core and L-leucine ethyl ether shell. An amphiphilic hyperbranched polymer consisting of a hyperbranched polythreitol as the hydrophilic core and trityl groups as the hydrophobic shell acts as unimolecular nanocapsule, and shows a high encapsulation ability for guest molecules. Amphiphilic hyperbranched polymer with a hydrophobic core and hydrophilic L-aspartic acid shell possess encapsulation properties for hydrophobic molecules in water. Hence, hyperbranched polymers are found to be good candidates for the dendritic core molecule of a unimolecular micelle or unimolecular nanocapsule.

Graphical abstract: Unimolecular micelles based on hyperbranched polycarbohydrate cores

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Publication details

The article was received on 06 Nov 2008, accepted on 26 Jan 2009 and first published on 26 Feb 2009


Article type: Review Article
DOI: 10.1039/B819748B
Citation: Soft Matter, 2009,5, 1972-1982
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    Unimolecular micelles based on hyperbranched polycarbohydrate cores

    T. Satoh, Soft Matter, 2009, 5, 1972
    DOI: 10.1039/B819748B

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