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Original Articles Open Access
Due to their strength, flexibility, biocompatibility and degradation properties, organic polymers films are promising materials for the replacement of bone grafts. Previous work has revealed that the dendritic polylysine-copolycaprolactone star polymer is flexible, strong and biocompatible. In this study, a hyperbranched version of the polylysine-co-polycaprolactone star polymer was tested for its ability to make composite films with hydroxyapatite (HA) and undergo proteolytic enzymatic degradation. The hyperbranched polymer was proposed to facilitate the synthesis as well as increase degradation rates compared to the dendritic based co-polymer by leaving free amine recognition sites in the lysine units. Utilizing a one-pot slow addition to core hyperbranching method produced a hyperbranched polymer analogous to the dendritic polylysine studied previously, but in a significantly shorter time. This hyperbranched polymer was then utilized as a core to initiate the ring opening polymerization of caprolactone to yield star co-polymers of various average molecule weights. The original dendritic moiety and the new star copolymers were then tested for enzymatic degradation using both trypsin and elastase. The hyperbranched polymer composites demonstrated some increased enzymatic degradation versus the dendritic moiety during the eight week period tested. However, the size of the polycaprolactone (PCL) chains appears to be a significant contributor to its degradation rate.
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Author(s): Keri BoduchLee Andrew M Becker Rachel L Collette Shanique K E Edwards andAlan M Kovacs
Hyperbranching, star polymers, polylysine-co-polycaprolactone, tissue engineering, enzymaticdegradation, hyperbranched polylysine polycaprolactone