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Durham e-Theses
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Surface Functionalised Emulsion-
Templated Porous Polymers for In-
Vitro Cell Culture

ZEYFERT, CAROLINE,MARGARET (2010) Surface Functionalised Emulsion-
Templated Porous Polymers for In-
Vitro Cell Culture.
Doctoral thesis, Durham University.

PDF (Thesis - CZeyfert) - Accepted Version


“PolyHIPE” is an acronym for polymerized high internal phase
emulsions. The nature of the formation of PolyHIPEs creates a highly porous, interconnected monolith structure, the architecture of which can be tightly controlled. Styrene-2-ethylhexylacrylate-divinylbenzene PolyHIPEs with defined
architecture of voids between 80 – 100 μm have been previously investigated as suitable supports for in-vitro cell culture, but the highly hydrophobic nature of the predominantly polystyrene scaffold requires extra processing steps to hydrate the surface before use as a support for cell culture. This thesis addresses routes to surface functionalise these PolyHIPEs for the specific aim of optimising 3D in-vitro cell culture materials. Specific routes to this include chemical modification, plasma treatment and chemical adsorption. Of these three routes to surface functionalisation, the plasma processing appears to give the best results, with further attachment of biologically-directing
molecules, possible. This thesis presents oxygen plasma treatment as a route to increase the hydrophilicity of these materials, with a reasonable shelf-life, which both reduces the processing steps before cell culture, and increases cell viability when grown on the functionalised PolyHIPE. The ultimate aim in this project is to create smart “off-the-shelf” materials that can control cell behaviour in-vitro. Chemical attachment to the surface of the PolyHIPE with synthetic retinoid EC23 has been proposed, and initial chemical tests obtained to suggest attachment, with future testing with mammalian cells envisaged.

Item Type:Thesis (Doctoral)
Award:Doctor of Philosophy
Keywords:PolyHIPE; polymer; Plasma; surface functionalisation; in-vitro cell culture;
Faculty and Department:Faculty of Science > Chemistry, Department of
Thesis Date:2010
Copyright:Copyright of this thesis is held by the author
Deposited On:01 Jun 2011 10:16

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