(162t) Tuning Supramolecular Hydrogel Rheology without Compromising Injectability
AIChE Annual Meeting
Thursday, November 19, 2020 - 8:00am to 9:00am
Supramolecular hydrogels have emerged as an exciting class of biomaterials for the development of injectable therapeutic strategies and 3D printing. They are comprised of physically associated and dynamic crosslinking motifs that imbue them with complex rheological behaviors (e.g. yield stress, shear-thinning, thixotropy). Most notably, supramolecular hydrogels may demonstrate solid-like behaviors at rest and liquid-like behaviors in response to shear, allowing for both injection and printing processes. Herein, I present our rheological investigation of supramolecular hydrogels across 6 orders of magnitude. I will discuss resulting strategies for tuning the solid-like properties of supramolecular hydrogels without compromising their injectability or printability. I show that increasing the concentration and composition of the supramolecular crosslinker has a large impact on the hydrogelâs properties at rest while having minimal impact on the flow properties at shear rates operative during printing and injection. Through the discovery of design rules for supramolecular hydrogels and development of property-function relationships, we hope to create engineering design strategies to accelerate the materials discovery and design process for the next generation of biomaterials for injectable drug delivery and 3D printing.