- Hydrolytic degradation of poly(D,L-lactide-co-glycolide 50/50)-di-acrylate network as studied by liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry
- Polymer Degradation and Stability
- Volume | Issue number
- 96 | 9
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Science (FNWI)
- Van 't Hoff Institute for Molecular Sciences (HIMS)
The soluble products of the hydrolytic degradation of photochemically cross-linked poly-(d,l-lactide-co-glycolide 50/50)-di-acrylate film were analysed at different stages to obtain insight into the complex (bio)degradation processes. Liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry analyses have been used to identify and quantify the various oligomeric and polymeric degradation products from the soluble fraction. The products were analysed directly after release and also after complete hydrolysis of the soluble fraction. The study shows a rapid release of residual photo-initiator followed by a gradual release of lactide/di-ethyleneglycol/glycolide oligomers with varying composition and chain length. The final stage of the sigmoidal weight loss profile reflects the release of polyacrylate chains with lactide/glycolide side chains. The molecular weights of the polyacrylate chains released increase with degradation time, which indicates that the release of these polyacrylate chains is determined by the number and type of ester-groups that must be degraded hydrolytically to dissolve these chains. The analysis of the soluble degradation products provides detailed insights in the chemical changes at the different stages of degradation; extraction, network attack, network penetration, bulk degradation, and finally release of persistent network fragments. Chromatographic and mass spectrometric techniques prove to be powerful tools to enhance the understanding of the hydrolytic degradation of chemically cross-linked acrylates.
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