Dual Physically Cross-Linked κ Carrageenan-Based Double Network Hydrogels with Superior Self-Healing Performance for Biomedical Application

Yi Deng, Min Huang, Dan Sun, Yi Hou, Yubao Li, Taosheng Dong, Xiaohong Wang, Li Zhang, Weizhong Yang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

37 Citations (Scopus)
255 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Chemically linked Double network (DN) hydrogels display extraordinary mechanical attributes but mostly suffer from poor self-healing property and unsatisfactory biocompatibility due to the irreversible breaks in their chemical-linked networks and the use of toxic chemical crosslinking agents. To address these limitations, we developed a novel κ-carrageenan/polyacrylamide (KC/PAM) DN hydrogel through a dual physical-crosslinking strategy, with the ductile, hydrophobically associated PAM being the first network, and the rigid potassium ion (K+) cross-linked KC being the second network. The dual physically cross-linked DN (DPC-DN) hydrogels with optimized KC concentration exhibit excellent fracture tensile stress (1320 ± 46 kPa) and toughness (fracture energy: 6900 ± 280 kJ/m3), comparable to those fully chemically linked DN hydrogels and physically-chemically cross-linked hybrid DN hydrogels. Moreover, owing to their unique dual physical-crosslinking structures, the KC/PAM hydrogels also demonstrated rapid self-recovery, remarkable notch-insensitivity, self-healing capability, as well as excellent cytocompatibility towards stem cells. Accordingly, this work presents a new strategy towards fabricating self-repairing DPC-DN hydrogels with outstanding mechanical behaviors and biocompatibility. The new type of DN hydrogels demonstrates strong potentiality in many challenging biomedical applications such as artificial diaphragm, tendon, and cartilage.
Original languageEnglish
JournalACS Applied Materials and Interfaces
Early online date08 Oct 2018
DOIs
Publication statusEarly online date - 08 Oct 2018

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