Rapid cellular internalization of multifunctional star polymers prepared by atom transfer radical polymerization

Hong Y. Cho, Haifeng Gao, Abiraman Srinivasan, Joanna Hong, Sidi A. Bencherif, Daniel J. Siegwart, Hyun Jong Paik, Jeffrey O. Hollinger, Krzysztof Matyjaszewski

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

41 Scopus citations


Poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) star polymers containing GRGDS (Gly-Arg-Gly-Asp-Ser) peptide sequences on the star periphery were synthesized by atom transfer radical polymerization (ATRP) of poly(ethylene glycol) methyl ether methacrylate (PEGMA), GRGDS modified poly(ethylene glycol) acrylate (GRGDS-PEG-Acryl), fluorescein o-methacrylate (FMA), and ethylene glycol dimethacrylate (EGDMA) via an "arm-first" method. Star polymers were approximately 20 nm in diameter, as measured by dynamic light scattering and atomic force microscopy. Conjugation of FMA to the stars was confirmed by fluorescence microscopy, and successful attachment of GRGDS segments to the star periphery was confirmed by 1H NMR spectroscopy. Both fluorescent PEG star polymers with and without peripheral GRGDS peptide segments were cultured with MC3T3-E1.4 cells. These star polymers were biocompatible with ≥90% cell viability after 24 h of incubation. Cellular uptake of PEG star polymers in MC3T3-E1.4 cells was observed by confocal microscopy. Rapid uptake of PEG star polymers with GRGDS peptides (∼100% of FITC-positive cells in 15 min measured by flow cytometry) was observed, suggesting enhanced delivery potential of these functional star polymers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2199-2203
Number of pages5
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Sep 13 2010


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • Materials Chemistry
  • Polymers and Plastics
  • Biomaterials

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