S. Noack, D. Schanzenbach, J. Koetz, H. Schlaad
Polylactide-Based Amphiphilic Block Copolymers: Crystallization-Induced Self-Assembly and Stereocomplexation
Macromol. Rapid Commun. 2019, 40, 1800639
DOI: 10.1002/marc.201800639
The aqueous self-assembly behavior of a series of poly(ethylene glycol)-poly(l-/d-lactide) block copolymers and corresponding stereocomplexes is examined by differential scanning calorimetry, dynamic light scattering, and transmission electron microscopy. Block copolymers assemble into spherical micelles and worm-like aggregates at room temperature, whereby the fraction of the latter seemingly increases with decreasing lactide weight fraction or hydrophobicity. The formation of the worm-like aggregates arises from the crystallization of the polylactide by which the spherical micelles become colloidally unstable and fuse epitaxically with other micelles. The self-assembly behavior of the stereocomplex aggregates is found to be different from that of the block copolymers, resulting in rather irregular-shaped clusters of spherical micelles and pearl-necklace-like structures.\\r\\n
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