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Prospect Park, NJ, United States

Deo N.,TR1 Princeton | Ruetsch S.,TR1 Princeton | Ramaprasad K.R.,TR1 Princeton | Kamath Y.,TR1 Princeton
Journal of Cosmetic Science | Year: 2010

New thermosensitive, cationic hydrogels were synthesized by the dispersion copolymerization of N-isopropylacrylamide (NIPAM) and (3-acrylamidopropyl) trimethylammonium chloride (AAPTAC). In the polymerization protocol, an amide-based comonomer, (3-acrylamidopropyl)trimethylammonium chloride, was reacted as a new alternative monomer for introducing positive charges into the thermosensitive hydrogel. The hydrogels were synthesized without making any pH adjustment in the aqueous medium. These hydrogel particles exhibited colloidal stability in the pH range of 1.5 to 11.0, while similar cationic hydrogels were reported to be unstable at pHs higher than 6. The stronger cationic character of the selected comonomer provided higher colloidal stability to the poly(NIPAM-co-AAPTAC) hydrogels. Furthermore, these hydrogels displayed sensitivity towards temperature, pH, and salt concentration. Interestingly, the particle size of hydrogels was found to be decreased significantly with an increase in temperature and salt concentration. In addition, using pyrene fluorescence spectroscopy, it was established that the hydrophobicity/ hydrophilicity of the hydrogel particles was largely controlled by both pH and temperature. The thermosensitive hydrogels reported in this paper may be suitable for delivering different actives for cosmetic and medical applications. Although direct application of these hydrogel particles in cosmetics has not been shown at this stage, the methodology of making them and controlling their absorption and release properties as a function of temperature and pH has been demonstrated. Furthermore, these hydrogels may also have applications in scavenging organic and inorganic toxics.

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