The Group is growing!

The group welcomes first-year graduate students Rachel Tritt, Sean Gitter, Vinnie Rigoglioso, and Cody Schilling. We’re all exciting to have outstanding new team members.

Integration of Metal-Free Ring-Opening Metathesis Polymerization and Organocatalyzed Ring-Opening Polymerization through a Bifunctional Initiator

We have investigated the use of metal-free ring-opening metathesis polymerization (MF-ROMP) in combination with organocatalyzed ring-opening polymerization (o-ROP) to produce diblock copolymers with highly disparate block compositions via exclusively metal-free methods. Use of a bifunctional initiator bearing a vinyl ether as organic initiator for MF-ROMP and an alcohol for initiation of o-ROP allowed for investigation of three synthetic approaches: 1) sequential polymerization with isolation of the intermediate macroinitiators, 2) simultaneous bidirectional polymerizations, and 3) “one-pot” sequential monomer addition. Macroinitiators formed by first conducting o-ROP were successfully used in subsequent MF-ROMP to prepare diblock copolymers. Simultaneous MF-ROMP and o-ROP was thwarted by incompatible cross-combinations of catalysts and monomers. Finally, a straightforward “one-pot” synthesis of block copolymers, using o-ROP followed by MF-ROMP, was realized by sequential addition of each monomer-catalyst combination.

Additive Manufacturing with Stimuli-Responsive Materials

Additive manufacturing, commonly referred to as 3D printing (3DP), has ushered in a new era of advanced manufacturing that is seemingly limited only by imagination. In actuality, the fullest potentials of 3DP can only be realized through innovative breakthroughs in printing technologies and build materials. Whereas equipment for 3DP has experienced considerable development, molecular-scale programming of function, adaptivity, and responsiveness in 3DP is burgeoning. This review aims to summarize the state-of-the-art in stimuli-responsive materials that are being explored in 3DP. First, we discuss stimuli-responsiveness as it is used to enable 3DP. This highlights the diverse ways in which molecular structure and reactivity dictate energy transduction that in turn enables 3D processability. Second, we summarize efforts that have demonstrated the use of 3DP to create materials, devices, and systems that are in their final stage stimuli-responsive. This section encourages the artistic license of advanced manufacturing to be applied toward leveraging, or enhancing, energy transduction to impart device function across multiple length scales.

Another review article just went online!

This review describes the current status and exciting potential of dual polymerization chemistry to provide advanced biomaterials. The review article is a continuation of our collaboration with the Pun Research Group at the University of …

Check out our latest review article!

This review focuses on recent advances in 3DP with stimuli-responsive materials. The publication is a continuation of our ongoing collaboration with the Nelson Research Group at the University of Washington. URL:!divAbstract

Dual Polymerizations: Untapped Potential for Biomaterials

Block copolymers with unique architectures and those that can self‐assemble into supramolecular structures are used in medicine as biomaterial scaffolds and delivery vehicles for cells, therapeutics, and imaging agents. To date, much of the work relies on controlling polymer behavior by varying the monomer side chains to add functionality and tune hydrophobicity. Although varying the side chains is an efficient strategy to control polymer behavior, changing the polymer backbone can also be a powerful approach to modulate polymer self‐assembly, rigidity, reactivity, and biodegradability for biomedical applications. There are many developments in the syntheses of polymers with segmented backbones, but these developments are not widely adopted as strategies to address the unique constraints and requirements of polymers for biomedical applications. This review highlights dual polymerization strategies for the synthesis of backbone‐segmented block copolymers to facilitate their adoption for biomedical applications.