Chapter 7: Degradation Behaviour of Biodegradable Thermogels
Published:27 Sep 2018
The unique properties of hydrogels make them attractive materials for numerous biomedical applications. Their high water content bears similarities to that of biological tissues. They can also be tuned to achieve different mechanical properties and rates of degradation. Thermogels are actively being developed for a variety of applications, ranging from carriers of drugs or cells to scaffolds for tissue engineering, and particularly for cancer chemotherapy. The rate and mechanism of degradation is fundamental to these possible applications and is therefore the focus of this chapter. Thermogels, techniques to tune their degradability and methods to study this degradation behaviour are discussed together with a summary of efforts to achieve the ideal thermogel with appropriate degradation profiles for different applications.