Poly(N-acryloylmorpholine): A simple hydrogel system for temporal and spatial control over cell adhesion

Mark Gorman, Ya Hua Chim, Andrew Hart, Mathis O. Riehle, Andrew Urquhart

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


N-acryloylmorpholine (NAM) was photo-polymerized to produce the homopolymer poly(N-acryloylmorpholine) (PNAM). PNAM behaves as a physical hydrogel in aqueous solvents, doubling its dry weight over a 2 h period before undergoing dissolution following a second order exponential decay profile. In vitro cellular experiments using mouse myoblasts showed that PNAM acts as an effective spatial cell barrier for 38 h, with slow migration of cells into the PNAM area occurring between 45 and 73 h after cell seeding. At 80 h myoblasts fully occupied the area initially blocked by PNAM. Immunofluorescent staining of myoblasts adjacent to PNAM showed normal cytoskeletal structure and well developed focal adhesions indicating limited PNAM toxicity. This study shows that PNAM is an easy to synthesize physical hydrogel that acts as a temporal and spatial barrier to cell adhesion. (c) 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Biomed Mater Res Part A: 102A: 1809-1815, 2014.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Biomedical Materials Research. Part B: Applied Biomaterials
Issue number6
Pages (from-to)1809-1815
Number of pages7
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Cell barrier
  • Hydrogel
  • poly(N-acryloylmorpholine)
  • Photo-polymerization
  • Myoblasts


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