Poly(Boc-Acryloyl Hydrazide): Optimisation of RAFT Polymerisation Through Modulation of Temperature

Poly(acryloyl hydrazide) is a versatile polymer scaffold readily functionalised through post-polymerisation modification with aldehydes to yield polymers with biological applications. Here we report the effect of temperature on the RAFT polymerisation N’-(tert-butoxycarbonyl)acryloyl hydrazide (1) and demonstrate that by carefully selecting this polymerisation temperature, a compromise between kinetics of polymerisation and degradation of the RAFT agent is achieved. This new methodology gives greater control over the polymerisation process, allowing the synthesis of Boc-protected poly(acryloyl hydrazide) with high degrees of polymerisation while still maintaining low dispersities. Our results provide new insights into the synthesis of functional polymers, and should be of interest to those working on the synthesis of polymers for biomedical applications by RAFT polymerisation.