In this study, we investigate the potential of an artificial structural motif, azobenzene, in the preparation of enzyme sensitive polymeric nanostructures. For this purpose, an azobenzene linkage is established at the copolymer junction of an amphiphilic diblock copolymer. This polymer assembles into a micellar structure in water. Treatment with the enzyme azoreductase, in the presence of coenzyme NADPH, results in the cleavage of the azo-based copolymer junction and disruption of the micellar assembly. These results suggest that azobenezene is a useful non-natural structural motif for the preparation of enzyme responsive polymer nanoparticles. Due to the presence of azoreductase in the human intestine, such nanomaterials are anticipated to find applicability in the arena of colon-specific delivery systems.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Colloid and Surface Chemistry