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Issue 20, 2020
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Enlightening advances in polymer bioconjugate chemistry: light-based techniques for grafting to and from biomacromolecules

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Abstract

Photochemistry has revolutionized the field of polymer–biomacromolecule conjugation. Ligation reactions necessitate biologically benign conditions, and photons have a significant energy advantage over what is available thermally at ambient temperature, allowing for rapid and unique reactivity. Photochemical reactions also afford many degrees of control, specifically, spatio-temporal control, light source tunability, and increased oxygen tolerance. Light-initiated polymerizations, in particular photo-atom-transfer radical polymerization (photo-ATRP) and photoinduced electron/energy transfer reversible addition–fragmentation chain transfer polymerization (PET-RAFT), have been used for grafting from proteins, DNA, and cells. Additionally, the spatio-temporal control inherent to light-mediated chemistry has been utilized for grafting biomolecules to hydrogel networks for many applications, such as 3-D cell culture. While photopolymerization has clear advantages, there are factors that require careful consideration in order to obtain optimal control. These factors include the photocatalyst system, light intensity, and wavelength. This Perspective aims to discuss recent advances of photochemistry for polymer biomacromolecule conjugation and potential considerations while tailoring these systems.

Graphical abstract: Enlightening advances in polymer bioconjugate chemistry: light-based techniques for grafting to and from biomacromolecules

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Article information


Submitted
13 Mar 2020
Accepted
28 Apr 2020
First published
06 May 2020

This article is Open Access
All publication charges for this article have been paid for by the Royal Society of Chemistry

Chem. Sci., 2020,11, 5142-5156
Article type
Perspective

Enlightening advances in polymer bioconjugate chemistry: light-based techniques for grafting to and from biomacromolecules

R. A. Olson, A. B. Korpusik and B. S. Sumerlin, Chem. Sci., 2020, 11, 5142 DOI: 10.1039/D0SC01544J

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