AIEgen quantitatively monitoring the release of Ca<sup>2+</sup> during swelling and degradation process in alginate hydrogels

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Journal Article
Materials Science and Engineering C, 2019, 104
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© 2019 Elsevier B.V. Alginate-based hydrogels are extensively used for different biomedical applications. While the swelling and degradation of alginate-based hydrogels affect their structure-property relationship, many studies employed gravimetric analysis to characterize the swelling-degradation process. Accurate or not, this traditional method is difficult to be consistently performed with minimized errors, especially at the late stage of the process. For the first time, this study introduced a reliable, accurate and cost-effective method to minimize the human-sourced errors during repetitive measurement of swelling and degradation of alginate-based hydrogels based on Ca2+ specified aggregation-induced emission fluorogen technology. This study provides an approach for characterization of different properties of alginate-based tissue engineered scaffolds. The established relation between the changes in released Ca2+ into the swelling environment and its relative intensity identified the potential application of the proposed method for prediction of swelling and degradation behaviour in alginate-based hydrogels.
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