Supramolecular Gelatin Networks Based on Inclusion Complexes


Hydrogel forming physical networks based on gelatin are an attractive approach toward multifunctional biomaterials with the option of reshaping, self‐healing, and stimuli‐sensitivity. However, it is challenging to design such gelatin‐based hydrogels to be stable at body temperature. Here, gelatin functionalized with desaminotyrosine (DAT) or desaminotyrosyl tyrosine (DATT) side chains is crosslinked with cyclodextrin (CD) dimers under formation of inclusions complexes. The supramolecular networks displayed at room temperature decreased water uptake (200–600 wt% for DAT‐based systems, 200 wt% for DATT based systems), and increased storage moduli up to 25.6 kPa determined by rheology compared to DAT(T) gelatin. The gel–sol transition temperature increased from 33 up to 42 °C. The presented system that is completely based on natural building blocks may form the basis for materials that may potentially respond by dissolution or changes of properties to changes in environmental conditions or to the presence of CD guest molecules.
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