Multiple hydrogen bonds induce formation of nanoparticles with internal microemulsion structure by an amphiphilic copolymer
Dehsorkhi, A., Castelletto, V., Hamley, I. and Harris, P. (2011) Multiple hydrogen bonds induce formation of nanoparticles with internal microemulsion structure by an amphiphilic copolymer. Soft Matter, 7. pp. 10116-10121. ISSN 1744-683X
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To link to this article DOI: 10.1039/C1SM06267K
A particulate microemulsion is generated in a simple two-component system comprising an amphiphilic copolymer (Pluronic P123) in mixtures with tannic acid. This is correlated to complexation between the poly(ethylene oxide) in the Pluronic copolymer and the multiple hydrogen bonding units in tannic acid which leads to the breakup of the ordered structure formed in gels of Pluronic copolymers, and the formation of dispersed nanospheres containing a bicontinuous internal structure. These novel nanoparticles termed ‘‘emulsomes’’ are self-stabilized by a coating layer of Pluronic copolymer. The microemulsion exhibits a pearlescent appearance due to selective light scattering from the emulsion droplets. This simple formulation based on a commercial copolymer and a biofunctional and biodegradable additive is expected to find applications in the fast moving consumer goods sector.