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Issue 15, 2001
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Polymerization of lactide and related cyclic esters by discrete metal complexes

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Abstract

This perspective highlights recent research on the preparation of polyesters by the ring-opening polymerization of cyclic esters employing well-characterized metal complexes. Particular focus is placed on the preparation of polylactide because of environmental advantages: it is biodegradable and its feedstock, lactide, is a renewable resource. A recurring theme is the correlation of precatalyst structure, often by X-ray crystallography, with polymerization activity and selectivity. Through this systematic approach to the deconvolution of catalyst structure/reactivity relationships, improved mechanistic understanding has been attained and key design criteria required for the development of new catalysts that exert control over the molecular parameters of polyesters and related copolymers have been revealed.

Graphical abstract: Polymerization of lactide and related cyclic esters by discrete metal complexes

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Article information


Submitted
14 May 2001
Accepted
20 Jun 2001
First published
16 Jul 2001

J. Chem. Soc., Dalton Trans., 2001, 2215-2224
Article type
Perspective

Polymerization of lactide and related cyclic esters by discrete metal complexes

B. J. O'Keefe, M. A. Hillmyer and W. B. Tolman, J. Chem. Soc., Dalton Trans., 2001, 2215
DOI: 10.1039/B104197P

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