University CrestControlled-Structure Biocompatible Block CopolymersArmes Research Group
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  4 September 2005

With the aid of a joint BBSRC grant with Prof. A. W. Lloyds' group at the University of Brighton, and in collaboration with Biocompatibles, a UK-based healthcare company, we have exploited ATRP to prepare new biocompatible block copolymers using a commercially available, phosphorylcholine-based biomimetic monomer, MPC [Y. Ma et al., Macromolecules, 2002 and Macromolecules, 2003].

2-Methacryloyloxyethyl phosphorylcholine monomer (MPC)

2-Methacryloyloxyethyl phosphorylcholine monomer (MPC)

For example, we recently reported that folic acid-decorated MPC-based diblock copolymer micelles can be loaded with hydrophobic anti-cancer drugs such as tamoxifen or paclitaxel and that triggered release of the drug payload can be achieved at intracellular pH [M. Licciardi et al., Biomacromolecules, 2005]. Both pH-responsive and thermo-responsive MPC-based ABA triblock copolymer gelators have been designed [Y. Ma et al., Biomacromolecules, 2003 and C. Li et al., Biomacromolecules, 2005] and in some cases cell viability studies have confirmed that the resulting thermo-responsive gels have potentially useful biocompatibility. Star diblock copolymers have also been evaluated but unfortunately these proved to be cytotoxic [Y. Li et al., Chem. Commun., 2004 and Y. Li and S. P. Armes, Langmuir, 2005, in the press]. In future work we will investigate the feasibility of preparing biochemical-responsive block copolymer gels.

Selected Publications
"Quantitative evaluation of mechanosensing of cells"
H. Y. Yoshikawa, F. F. Rossetti, S. Kaufman, T. Kaindl, U. Engel, A. L. Lewis, J. Madsen, S. P. Armes and M. Tanaka
Journal of the American Chemical Society 2011, 133, 1367
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"Wet nano-scale imaging and testing of polymersomes"
C. LoPresti, S. Forster, M. Massignani, N. J. Warren, J. Madsen, S. P. Armes, C. Vasilev, J. K. Hobbs S. Chirasatitsin, A. Engler and G. Battaglia
Small 2011, 7, 201
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"Efficient encapsulation of plasmid DNA in pH-sensitive PMPC-PDPA polymersomes: study of the effect of PDPA block length on copolymer-DNA binding affinity"
H. Lomas, J. Z. Du, I. Canton, J. Madsen, N. J. Warren, S. P. Armes, G. Battaglia, A. L. Lewis
Macromolecular Bioscience 2010, 10, 51
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"Enhanced fluorescent imaging of live cells by efficient cytostolic delivery of probes"
M. Massignani, C. Lo Presti, A. Blanazs, S. P. Armes , A. L. Lewis and G. Battaglia
PLoS One 2010, 5, e10459
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"Diffusion Studies of Nanometer Polymersomes Across Tissue Engineered Human Oral Mucosa"
Vanessa Hearnden, Hannah Lomas, Sheila MacNeil, Martin Thornhill, Craig Murdoch, Andrew Lewis, Jeppe Madsen, Adam Blanazs, Steve Armes and Giuseppe Battaglia
Pharmaceutical Research 2009, 26, 1718
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"Synthesis of Biocompatible Poly[2-(methacryloyloxy)ethyl phosphorylcholine]-Coated Magnetite Nanoparticles"
J.-J. Yuan, S. P. Armes, Y. Takabayashi, K. Prassides, C. A. P. Leite, F. Galembeck, A. L. Lewis
Langmuir 2006, 22, 10989
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"DNA immobilization using biocompatible diblock phosphorylcholine copolymers"
X. Zhao, Z. Zhang, F. Pan, Y. Ma, S. P. Armes, A. L. Lewis, J. R. Lu
Surface and Interface Analysis 2006, 38, 548
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"Synthesis and characterization of biocompatible thermo-responsive gelators based on ABA triblock copolymers"
C. M. Li, Y. Q. Tang, S. P. Armes, C. J. Morris, S. F. Rose, A. W. Lloyd and A. L. Lewis
Biomacromolecules 2005, 6, 994
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"Synthesis of novel folic acid-functionalized biocompatible block copolymers by atom transfer radical polymerization for gene delivery and encapsulation of hydrophobic drugs"
M. Licciardi, Y. Tang, N. C. Billingham and S. P. Armes
Biomacromolecules 2005, 6, 1085
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"pH-sensitive vesicles based on a biocompatible zwitterionic diblock copolymer"
J. Z. Du, Y. P. Tang, A. L. Lewis, S. P. Armes
Journal of the American Chemical Society 2005, 127, 17982
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"Synthesis and Characterization of Biocompatible, Thermoresponsive ABC and ABA Triblock Copolymer Gelators"
C. Li, N. J. Buurma, I. Haq, C. Turner, S. P. Armes, V. Castelletto, I.W. Hamley, A.L. Lewis
Langmuir 2005, 21, 11026
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"The biocompatibility of crosslinkable copolymer coatings containing sulfobetaines and phosphobetaines"
S. L. West, J. P. Salvage, E. J. Lobb, S. P. Armes, N. C. Billingham, A. L. Lewis, G. W. Hanlon and A. W. Lloyd
Biomaterials 2004, 25, 1195
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"Biomimetic thermo-responsive star diblock gelators"
Y. Li, R. Narain, Y. Ma, A. L. Lewis and S. P. Armes
Chemical Communications 2004, 23, 2746
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"Microstructure and physical properties of a pH-responsive gel based on a novel biocompatible ABA-type triblock copolymer"
V. Castelletto, I. W. Hamley, Y. H. Ma, X. Bories-Azeau, S. P. Armes and A. L. Lewis
Langmuir 2004, 20, 4306
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"Synthesis of Biocompatible, Stimuli-Responsive, Physical Gels Based on ABA Triblock Copolymers"
Y. Ma, Y. Tang, N. C. Billingham, and S. P. Armes
Biomacromolecules 2003, 4, 864
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"Well-defined biocompatible block copolymers via atom transfer radical polymerization of 2-methacryloyloxyethyl phosphorylcholine in protic media"
Y. Ma, Y. Tang, N. C. Billingham, S. P. Armes, A. L. Lewis, A. W. Lloyd, J. P. Salvage
Macromolecules 2003, 36, 3475
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"Synthesis of biocompatible polymers. 1. Homopolymerization of 2-methacryloyloxyethyl phosphorylcholine via ATRP in protic solvents: an optimization study"
I. Ma, E. J. Lobb, N. C. Billingham, S. P. Armes, A. L. Lewis, A. W. Lloyd, J. P. Salvage
Macromolecules 2002, 35, 9306
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"Facile synthesis of well-defined, biocompatible phosphorylcholine-based methacrylate copolymers by atom transfer radical polymerisation at 20 °C"
E. J. Lobb, I. Ma, N. C. Billingham, S. P. Armes and A. L. Lewis
Journal of the American Chemical Society 2001, 123, 7913
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