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The State Key Laboratory of Molecular Engineering of Polymers, Department of Macromolecular Science and Laboratory of Advanced Materials, Fudan University, Handan Street 220, Shanghai 200433, China
Department of Polymer Materials, Shanghai University, Chengzhong Street 20, Shanghai 201800, China
; Fax: +86-21-69982827
Soft Matter, 2012,8, 6371-6377
08 Feb 2012,
09 Apr 2012
First published online
14 May 2012
Supramolecular copolymerization from a mixture of comonomers with different hydrophilicities may offer an easy and convenient access to form thermoresponsive supramolecular copolymers with varied phase transition temperatures by simply varying ratios of the comonomers. Herein, supramolecular dendronized copolymers (SDCPs) were constructed via host–guest interaction from a linear polymer carrying β-cyclodextrin units (the host) and a mixture of two adamantyl-cored second generation oligo(ethylene glycol) dendrons (the guests). The phase transition temperatures of these SDCPs can be tuned continuously in the range of 34–56 °C by varying the ratios of the dendritic guests. To check the possible effects of steric hindrance and hydrophilicity of the guests on the supramolecular complexation, isothermal titration calorimetry was applied to follow the complexation process of the first (G1) and second generation (G2) dendritic guests. Proton NMR spectroscopy was utilized to follow dehydration and collapse processes of SDCPs. It was found that the dehydration and collapse of the OEG units initiated decomposition of the dendritic guests from the supramolecular copolymers, and the more hydrophobic guest dissociated at a much lower temperature than that for the more hydrophilic one.
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