Polysaccharide-containing block copolymers: synthesis and applications
Polysaccharide-based block copolymers have been studied since the early 1960s and command growing interest due to the increasing importance of sustainable materials. Polysaccharides are renewable, often biodegradable, generally nontoxic, and offer wide structural variety, yielding remarkably diverse materials that provide a wide range of properties and applications. Block copolymers containing one or more polysaccharide blocks and one or more synthetic blocks can be synthesized using a variety of methods, either through direct coupling or chain extension approaches. Here we review current synthetic methods for the preparation of polysaccharide-containing block copolymers. We also discuss established and emerging applications of this class of block copolymers, such as their use as drug delivery vehicles, hydrogels for localized drug delivery, and surfactants/interfacial agents for stabilizing interfaces, including those in polysaccharide/synthetic polymer blends.
- This article is part of the themed collection: In honour of Professor Robert H. Grubbs for his 50-year contributions in metathesis