Post-polymerization modification of bio-based polymers: Maximizing the high functionality of polymers derived from biomass

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review



Publication details

JournalPolymer international
DateAccepted/In press - 23 Feb 2018
DateE-pub ahead of print (current) - 23 Feb 2018
Issue number67
Number of pages15
Pages (from-to)775-789
Early online date23/02/18
Original languageEnglish


The renaissance of the bio-based chemical industry over the last 20years has seen an ever growing interest in the synthesis of new bio-based polymers. The building blocks of these new polymers, so called platform molecules, contain significantly more chemical functionality than their petrochemical counterparts (such as ethene, propene and para-xylene). As a result bio-based polymers often contain greater residual chemical functionality in their chains, with groups such as alkenes and hydroxyls commonly observed. These functional groups can act as sites for post-polymerization modification (PPM), thus further extending the range of applications for bio-based polymers by tailoring the polymers' final properties. This mini-review highlights some of the most recent and compelling examples of how to make use of bio-based polymers with residual functional groups for PPM. It also looks at how the emerging interdisciplinary field of enzymatic polymer synthesis allows for increased functionality in polymers by avoiding side-reactions as a result of milder reaction conditions, and additionally offers an alternative means of polymer surface modification.

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© 2018 Society of Chemical Industry. This is an author-produced version of the published paper. Uploaded in accordance with the publisher’s self-archiving policy. Further copying may not be permitted; contact the publisher for details

    Research areas

  • Bio-based monomers, Bio-based polymers, Enzymatic polymerization, Post-polymerization functionalization, Post-polymerization modification, Unsaturated polyester

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