Biodegradable Polymers for Drug Delivery and Tissue Engineering
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Regeneration, a spontaneous response of bones in response to injuries, infections and fractures, is severely compromised in certain clinical circumstances. Unfortunately, several shortcomings are associated with the current treatment of bone grafting method such as donor shortage and immune response for allografts and donor morbidity for autografts. Thus, the development of clinical alternates is essential. One promising adjunct method is bone tissue engineering that includes the implantation of a scaffold containing the cells with the supplementation of suitable growth factors. Among the various classes of materials, biodegradable polymers are commonly preferred because their use does not necessitate a secondary surgery for their removal after the intended use. Commercially available polymers such as poly (lactic- co- glycolic acid) and polycaprolactone are expensive and degrade slowly. This motivates the development of novel synthetic biodegradable polymers that are affordable and can be tuned to tailor for specific biomedical applications. The primary aim of this thesis is to synthesize effective biodegradable polymers for drug delivery and bone tissue engineering. The properties of these polymers such as modulus, hydrophobicity and crosslinking etc. were tailored based on the variations in chemical bonds, chain lengths and the molar stoichiometric ratios of the monomers for specific clinical applications. Based on the above variations, degradation and release kinetics were tuned. The cytocompatibilty properties for these polymers were studied and suitable mineralization studies were conducted to determine their potential for bone regeneration.