Controlling the network type in self-assembled dipeptide hydrogels

Colquhoun, C., Draper, E. R. , Schweins, R., Marcello, M., Vadukul, D., Serpell, L. C. and Adams, D. J. (2017) Controlling the network type in self-assembled dipeptide hydrogels. Soft Matter, 13(9), pp. 1914-1919. (doi: 10.1039/C6SM02666D) (PMID:28186211)

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We show that the same low molecular weight gelator can form gels using three different methods. Gels were formed from a high pH solution by either adding a salt or by adding an acid; gels were also formed by adding water to a solution of the gelator in an organic solvent. The mechanical properties for the gels formed by the different methods are different to one another. We link this to the network type that is formed, as well as the fibrous structures that are formed. The salt-triggered gels show a significant number of fibres that tend to align. The acid-triggered gels contain many thin fibres, which form an entangled network. The solvent-triggered gels show the presence of spherulitic domains. We show that it is tractable to vary the trigger mechanism for an established, robust gelator to prepare gels with targeted properties as opposed to synthesising new gelators.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Draper, Emily and Adams, Dave
Authors: Colquhoun, C., Draper, E. R., Schweins, R., Marcello, M., Vadukul, D., Serpell, L. C., and Adams, D. J.
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > School of Chemistry
Journal Name:Soft Matter
Publisher:Royal Society of Chemistry
ISSN (Online):1744-6848
Published Online:31 January 2017
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2017 The Royal Society of Chemistry
First Published:First published in Soft Matter 13(9):1914-1919
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License
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Project CodeAward NoProject NamePrincipal InvestigatorFunder's NameFunder RefLead Dept
768041Multicomponent Supramolecular HydrogelsDave AdamsEngineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)EP/L021978/2SCHOOL OF CHEMISTRY