The nature of polymer grafts and substrate shape on the surface degradation of poly(l-lactide)

Robertus Wahyu N Nugroho, Karin Odelius, Anders Höglund, Ann Christine Albertsson*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


Surface grafting of functional polymers is an effective method to alter material properties and degradation behavior. Two different substrate shapes of poly(l-lactide) (PLLA), i.e., films and microparticles, were surface-grafted with hydrophilic monomers, and their surface degradation was monitored. Surface grafting with a hydrophilic and acidic polymer graft [acrylic acid (AA)] induced large alterations in the surface morphology and topography of the films. In contrast, hydrophilic and neutral polymer grafts [acrylamide (AAm)] had no significant effect on the surface degradation behavior, while the PLLA reference and co-monomeric (AA/AAm) polymer-grafted samples exhibited intermediate surface degradation rates. The grafted PAA chains induced a local acidic environment on the surface of the substrates, which in turn catalyzed the surface degradation process. This effect was more pronounced in the films than in the microparticles. Thus, the nature of the grafted chains and substrate geometry were shown to affect the surface degradation behavior of PLLA substrates.

Original languageEnglish
Article number42736
Pages (from-to)1-11
JournalJournal of Applied Polymer Science
Issue number47
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2015
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • degradation
  • properties and characterization
  • surfaces and interfaces


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