Access to biocompatible hydrogels with tuneable properties is of great interest in biomedical applications. Here we report the synthesis and characterisation of a series of photo-crosslinked chitosan hydrogels from norbornene-functionalised chitosan (CS-nb) and various thiolated crosslinkers. The resulting materials were characterised by NMR, swelling ratio, rheology, SEM and small angle neutron scattering (SANS) measurements. The hydrogels exhibited pH- and salt-dependent swelling, whilst the macro- and micro-scale properties could be modulated by the choice and degree of crosslinker or the polymer concentration. The materials could be moulded in situ and loaded with small molecules that can be released overtime. Moreover, the incorporation of collagen in the hydrogels drastically improved cell adhesion, with excellent viabilities of human dermofibroblast cells on the hydrogels observed for up to 6 days, highlighting the potential use of these materials in the biomedical area.
- BCS and TECS CDTs
- biocompatible materials