Ionically crosslinkable polyphosphazene: a novel polymer for microencapsulation Academic Article uri icon


  • Synthetic polymers are used increasingly in medical science due to the chemist's ability to incorporate specific properties such as strength, hydrogel characteristics, permeability, or biocompatibility, particularly in fields like cell encapsulation and drug delivery where such properties are often prerequisites. However, harsh conditions, eg, heat or organic solvents, are always used when encapsulating with these polymers,'often causing difficulties in encapsulating sensitive entities, eg, proteins, liposomes, and mammalian cells. At the opposite extreme, a natural polymer, alginate, extracted from seaweed, has been widely used for cell encapsulation. 2 This polymer can be ionically cross-linked in water to form hydrogels that fulfill many of the above requirements. However, natural polymers display variable biocompatibility and some properties can be reproduced only with difficulty. lb …

publication date

  • May 1, 2002