The Effect of Glycerol on the Reduction of Oxidation Degradation in Shape Memory Polymer Foams
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A biocompatible shape memory polyurethane foam device has been developed as a treatment for neurovascular aneurysm occlusion. Polyurethanes are extensively utilized in biomaterials due to their biocompatibility and easily customizable traits. The synthesis of the proposed polyurethane-based SMP device includes triethanolamine (TEA), which incorporates a nitrogen into the polymer backbone. The nitrogen promotes oxidative degradation initiation in the presence of reactive oxygen species (ROS). Oxidative degradation could result in the chemical breakdown of the polymer chain and the potential production of harmful by-products from the material. In the present research, foams were synthesized using glycerol in place of TEA to evaluate a means to reduce oxidative degradation. After addition of glycerol, foam characterization showed that physical traits and thermal responses were retained and mechanical properties were improved relative to foams synthesized with TEA. Accelerated degradation studies demonstrated a decreased rate of oxidative degradation with increasing glycerol concentration. Overall, replacement of TEA with glycerol provides a polyurethane foam with reduced oxidative degradation while retaining the desired physical and thermal characteristics.
Harmon, Garrett James (2017). The Effect of Glycerol on the Reduction of Oxidation Degradation in Shape Memory Polymer Foams. Undergraduate Research Scholars Program. Available electronically from