Orthogonal functionalization strategies in polymeric materials
Yang, Si Kyung
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This thesis describes original research aimed at the development of highly efficient polymer functionalization strategies by introducing orthogonal chemistry within polymeric systems. The primary hypothesis of this thesis is that the use of click chemistries or noncovalent interactions can provide new and easy pathways towards the synthesis of highly functionalized polymers thereby addressing the shortcomings of traditional covalent functionalization approaches. To verify the hypothesis, the work presented in the following chapters of this thesis further explores previous methods of either covalent or noncovalent polymer functionalization described in Chapter 1. Chapters 2 and 3 present advanced methods of covalent polymer functionalization based on high-yielding and orthogonal click reactions: 1,3-dipolar cycloaddition, hydrazone formation, and maleimide-thiol coupling. All three click reactions employed can be orthogonal to one another and conversions can be quantitative, leading to the easy and rapid synthesis of highly functionalized polymers without interference among functional handles along the polymer backbones. The next two chapters focus on the noncovalent functionalization strategies for creating supramolecular block copolymers via the main-chain self-assembly of telechelic polymers. Novel synthetic methods to prepare telechelic polymers bearing terminal recognition motifs were developed through a combination of ROMP using functionalized ruthenium initiators and functionalized chain-terminators, and the resulting polymers were self-assembled to form supramolecular block copolymers. Chapter 4 demonstrates the formation of supramolecular multiblock copolymers via self-assembly of symmetrical telechelic polymers using metal coordination, while Chapter 5 demonstrates that supramolecular ABC triblock copolymers can be prepared by the self-assembly of a heterotelechelic polymer as the central block with two other complementary monotelechelic polymers using two orthogonal hydrogen bonding interactions. Chapter 6 presents a unique application of noncovalent functionalization approaches. The ultimate goal of this research is to develop a controlled polymerization method based on noncovalent templation. The initial attempts at the metal coordination-based template polymerization are presented in this chapter. Finally, Chapter 7 summarizes the findings in each chapter and presents the potential extensions of the orthogonal functionalization strategies developed in this thesis.