Redox-active polyamine-salt aggregates as multistimuli-responsive soft nanoparticles†
Polyamine-salt aggregates have become promising soft materials in nanotechnology due to their easy preparation process and pH-responsiveness. Here, we report the use of hexacyanoferrate(II) and hexacyanoferrate(III) as electroactive crosslinking agents for the formation of nanometer-sized redox-active polyamine-redox-salt aggregates (rPSA) in bulk suspension. This nanoplatform can be selectively assembled or disassembled under different stimuli such as redox environment, pH and ionic strength. By changing the charge of the building blocks, external triggers allow switching the system between two phase states: aggregate-free solution or colloidal rPSA dispersion. The stimuli-activated modulation of the assembly/disassembly processes opens a path to exploit rPSA in technologies based on smart nanomaterials.