Study of the quantitative aminolysis reaction of poly(β-benzyl l-aspartate) (PBLA) as a platform polymer for functionality materials

Masataka Nakanishi, Joon Sik Park, Woo Dong Jang, Makoto Oba, Kazunori Kataoka

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69 Citations (Scopus)


A facile and quantitative aminolysis of poly(β-benzyl l-aspartate) (PBLA) as well as the solution properties of the prepared cationic polyaspartamide were investigated in this study. The reaction was found to proceed in good yield without undesired side reactions via the formation of a succinimide intermediate in the polymer backbone, which was efficiently converted to polyaspartamide accompanying the α,β isomerization of the main chain. The polarity of solvents and the secondary structure of the polymer strand were closely related to each other in terms of reactivity and stereoselectivity. The aminolysis of PBLA treated with one equivalent amine against benzyl ester groups resulted in the complete conversion at 35 °C in random-coil solvents within 1 h. The racemization that accompanied this reaction was observed in random-coil solvents, but was efficiently suppressed in helicogenic solvents, with 95% of the optical purity maintained in CH2Cl2. In addition, the quantitative introduction of N,N-diisopropylethylenediamine (DIP) led to the formation of cationic polyaspartamide, poly[N-(N′,N′-diisopropylaminoethyl)aspartamide] (PAsp(DIP)), which showed pH and thermo-sensitivities in aqueous media. This systematic investigation of the aminolysis of PBLA with DIP demonstrates the feasibility of a PBLA-aminolysis system for designing functionalized polyaspartamides which can be useful as biomaterials.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1361-1372
Number of pages12
JournalReactive and Functional Polymers
Issue number11 SPEC. ISS.
Publication statusPublished - 2007 Nov

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors wish to express their gratitude to Prof. T. Tsuruta, Professor Emeritus, The University of Tokyo, for his valuable discussions and critical comments on this research. This work was financially supported by the Core Research for Evolutional Science and Technology (CREST) from the Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST).

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Biochemistry
  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Polymers and Plastics
  • Materials Chemistry


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