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Synthesis and Characterization of Poly(vinylphosphonic acid-co-acrylic acid) Copolymers for Application in Bone Tissue Scaffolds

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journal contribution
posted on 23.03.2016, 18:48 by Rebecca E. Dey, Xia Zhong, Peter J. Youle, Qi Guang Wang, Ian Wimpenny, Sandra Downes, Judith A. Hoyland, David C. Watts, Julie E. Gough, Peter M. Budd
Poly­(vinylphosphonic acid-co-acrylic acid) (PVPA-co-AA) has recently been identified as a possible candidate for use in bone tissue engineering. It is hypothesized that the strong binding of PVPA-co-AA to calcium in natural bone inhibits osteoclast activity. The free radical polymerization of acrylic acid (AA) with vinylphosphonic acid (VPA) has been investigated with varying experimental conditions. A range of copolymers were successfully produced and their compositions were determined quantitatively using 31P NMR spectroscopy. Monomer conversions were calculated using 1H NMR spectroscopy and a general decrease was found with increasing VPA content. Titration studies demonstrated an increase in the degree of dissociation as a function of VPA in the copolymer. However, a VPA content ca. 30 mol % was found to be the optimum for calcium chelation, suggesting that this composition is the most promising for biomaterials applications. Assessment of cell metabolic activity showed that PVPA-co-AA has no detrimental effect on cells, regardless of copolymer composition.