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Design of Functionalized Cellulosic Honeycomb Films: Site-Specific Biomolecule Modification via “Click Chemistry”

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journal contribution
posted on 13.02.2012, 00:00 by William Z. Xu, Xinyue Zhang, John F. Kadla
Value-added materials from naturally abundant polymers such as cellulose are of significant importance. In particular, cellulosic open-framework structures with controlled chemical functionality of the internal surface have great potential in many biosensor applications. Although various cellulose derivatives can form porous honeycomb structured materials, solubility issues and problems with film formation exist. To address this, we have generated robust cellulosic open-framework structures that can be post-functionalized through site-specific modification. Regioselectively modified amphiphilic cellulose azides, 3-O-azidopropoxypoly­(ethylene glycol)-2,6-di-O-thexyldimethylsilyl cellulosics, were synthesized, and honeycomb-patterned films were readily produced by the simple breath figures method. Changing the degree of polymerization (DP) of the pendent ethylene glycol (EGDP) groups from 22 to 4 increased the corresponding honeycomb film pore diameters from ∼1.2 to ∼2.6 μm, enabling the potential tuning of pore size. Moreover, these novel azido-functionalized honeycomb films were easily functionalized using Cu­(I)-catalyzed alkyne–azide [2 + 3] cycloaddition reaction; biotin was “clicked” onto the azide functionalized cellulosic honeycomb films without any effect to the film structure. These results indicate this system may serve as a platform for the design and development of biosensors.