Polymer Science Faculty Research

Synthesis, characterization, and bioavailability of mannosylated shell cross-linked nanoparticles

Matthew Becker


Saccharide-functionalized shell cross-linked (SCK) polymer micelles designed as polyvalent nanoscaffolds for selective interactions with receptors on Gram negative bacteria were constructed from mixed micelles composed of poly(acrylic acid-b-methyl acrylate) and mannosylated poly(acrylic acid-b-methyl acrylate). The mannose unit was conjugated to the hydrophilic chain terminus of the amphiphilic diblock copolymer precursor, from which the SCK nanoparticles were derived, by the growth of the diblock copolymer from a mannoside functionalized atom transfer radical polymerization (ATRP) initiator. Mixed micelle formation between the amphiphilic diblock copolymer and mannosylated amphiphilic diblock copolymer was followed by condensation-based cross-linking between the acrylic acid residues present in the periphery of the polymer micelles to afford SCK nanoparticles. SCKs presenting variable numbers of mannose functionalities were prepared from mixed micelles of controlled stoichiometric ratios of mannosylated and nonmannosylated diblock copolymers. The polymer micelles and SCKs were characterized by dynamic light scattering (DLS), electrophoretic light scattering, atomic force microscopy (AFM), transmission electron microscopy (TEM), and analytical ultracentrifugation (AU). Surface availability and bioactivity of the mannose units were evaluated by interactions of the nanostructures with the model lectin Concanavalin A via DLS studies, with red blood cells (rabbit) via agglutination inhibition assays and with bacterial cells (E. coli) via TEM imaging.