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Biomacromolecules. 2011 May 9;12(5):1658-65. doi: 10.1021/bm200039s. Epub 2011 Mar 18.

Synthesis and characterization of dendron cross-linked PEG hydrogels as corneal adhesives.

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Department of Chemistry, Boston University, Boston, Massachusetts 02215, United States.


In pursuit of a wound-specific corneal adhesive, hydrogels formed by the reaction of propionaldehyde, butyraldehyde, or 2-oxoethyl succinate-functionalized poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) with a peptide-based dendritic cross-linker (Lys(3)Cys(4)) were characterized. These macromers react within minutes of mixing to form transparent and elastic hydrogels with in vitro degradation times that range from hours to months based on the type of bonds formed during the cross-linking reaction, either thiazolidine or pseudoproline. The mechanical properties of these materials, determined via parallel plate rheology, were dependent on the polymer concentration, as was the hydrogel adhesive strength, which was determined by lap shear adhesive testing. In addition, these hydrogels were efficacious in closing ex vivo 4.1 mm central corneal lacerations: wounds closed with these hydrogel adhesives were able to withstand intraocular pressure values equivalent to, or in excess of, those obtained by closing the wounds with suturing.

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