A new special issue in Macromolecular Bioscience guest-edited by Tanja Weil and Matthias Barz highlights emerging applications of polymers for the synthesis of functional biomaterials. In their editorial, they emphasize the benefits of polymers for use in biological systems:
Polymers provide many unique features and in particular their structural flexibility enables tailoring material properties for the desired application. The individual structural optimization of a given polymer requires feedback systems, namely in vitro or in vivo studies, to fully explore and customize their properties. Consequently, most articles in this issue describe the optimization of polymers for biomedical applications particularly focusing on their in vitro and finally also their in vivo evaluation in relevant disease models. The great challenge is to tailor polymer properties to a specific biomedical, often therapeutic, need and to advance from fundamental materials research into clinical translation. Here, avoiding simplification and overgeneralization in the development of biomaterials will be a crucial step. […]
Due to the structural versatility of polymers, their applications can be broad. In this special issue, biomedical applications range from drug and gene delivery systems, immune therapies and wound healing of colloidal systems or hydrogels to local release formulations. This wide range of applications underlines the enormous variety of material properties polymers could provide and opens up a rich field for polymer research.
Continue reading here.
Read some of the highlights here:
Immunomodulatory Nanomedicine (Bartneck)