Articles written in Bulletin of Materials Science
Volume 34 Issue 7 December 2011 pp 1537-1547
In the present work biodegradable pH-sensitive polycaprolactone/acrylic acid (PCL/AA) hydrogels have been developed using ethylene glycol dimethacrylate (EGDMA) as a cross-linker and benzoyl peroxide as initiator. For these prepared hydrogels swelling studies, sol–gel fraction analysis and porosity measurements were performed. Results show that swelling of the hydrogels decreases on increasing the concentration of PCL and EGDMA, however swelling of hydrogels increases on increasing the concentration of AA. Results of sol–gel fraction analysis show that gel fraction increases on increasing concentration of monomer AA, polymer PCL as well as cross-linker EGDMA. As far as porosity is concerned, it increases on increasing the concentration of AA and PCL while porosity decreases on increasing the concentration of EGDMA. Hydrogels were characterized by measuring diffusion coefficient (𝐷) and equilibrium water content (EWC). Network formation, morphology and crystallinity of PCL/AA hydrogels were investigated using FTIR, SEM and XRD, respectively. Tramadol hydrochloride was loaded as model drug and its release pattern was analysed using various kinetic models like zero order, first order, Higuchi and Peppas. Results indicated that most of the samples followed non-Fickian release mechanism.
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