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Issue 11, 2012
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Dynamic-covalent nanostructures prepared by Diels–Alder reactions of styrene-maleic anhydride-derived copolymers obtained by one-step cascade block copolymerization

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Abstract

Macromolecular star formation by Diels–Alder chemistry resulted in dynamic nanomaterials capable of reversibly demonstrating the properties of both linear and highly branched macromolecules. Well-defined block copolymers of maleic anhydride (MAn) and styrene [poly(styrene-alt-MAn)-b-polystyrene (P(S-alt-MAn)-b-PS)] were prepared via a one-pot cascade approach by reversible addition–fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) polymerization. Subsequent ring opening of the anhydride groups in the P(S-alt-MAn) segments by amidation with furfurylamine led to the formation of block copolymers with pendant furan functionality. Diels–Alder reactions of the furan-functional block copolymer with a bismaleimide crosslinker resulted in core-crosslinked stars by an arm-first approach. Star-like structures were also prepared by first allowing the furan-functional block copolymers to pre-assemble into polymeric micelles in a solvent selective for the polystyrene block. Subsequent addition of a bismaleimide and heating to allow the Diels–Alder reaction resulted in core-crosslinked micelles with similar structures to the polymeric stars prepared by the arm-first approach. Regardless of the synthetic approach employed, the thermoreversibility of the Diels–Alder linkages within the cores rendered the stars/crosslinked micelles dynamic-covalent, as demonstrated by their ability to reversibly dissociate back to the individual arms on heating.

Graphical abstract: Dynamic-covalent nanostructures prepared by Diels–Alder reactions of styrene-maleic anhydride-derived copolymers obtained by one-step cascade block copolymerization

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Publication details

The article was received on 18 May 2012, accepted on 06 Jun 2012 and first published on 13 Jun 2012


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C2PY20351K
Citation: Polym. Chem., 2012,3, 3112-3120
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    Dynamic-covalent nanostructures prepared by Diels–Alder reactions of styrene-maleic anhydride-derived copolymers obtained by one-step cascade block copolymerization

    A. P. Bapat, J. G. Ray, D. A. Savin, E. A. Hoff, D. L. Patton and B. S. Sumerlin, Polym. Chem., 2012, 3, 3112
    DOI: 10.1039/C2PY20351K

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