From membrane to skin: aqueous permeation control through light-responsive amphiphilic polymer co-networks

Katrin Schöller*, Sabrina Küpfer, Lukas Baumann, Patrick M. Hoyer, Damien De Courten, René M. Rossi, Aliaksei Vetushka, Martin Wolf, Nico Bruns, Lukas J. Scherer

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

55 Citations (Scopus)


The functionalization of amphiphilic polymer co-networks with light-responsive spiropyran and spirooxazine derivatives leads to a new type of light-responsive materials. The material consisting of hydrophilic nanochannels shows desirable properties such as light-responsive permeability changes of aqueous caffeine solutions, an exceptional repeatability of the photochromism, and tunable basic permeability rates. The versatility of the system is demonstrated by using different functionalization routes such as copolymerization of light-responsive monomers or crosslinker as well as postmodification of the preformed amphiphilic network. Moreover, light-responsive spirobenzopyran and novel spirooxazine derivatives are synthesized, which changes the properties of the light-responsive membranes after inclusion into the amphiphilic co-networks. Finally, the permeability of the delivery membrane can be tailored to match the properties of porcine skin, an in vitro model of human neonatal skin. One possible application might be the use of the light-responsive membranes as key-unit of a transdermal caffeine-delivery system for preterm neonates.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5194-5201
Number of pages8
JournalAdvanced Functional Materials
Issue number33
Early online date30 May 2014
Publication statusPublished - 3 Sept 2014


  • amphiphilic structures
  • drug delivery
  • optically active polymers
  • stimuli-responsive hydrogels


Dive into the research topics of 'From membrane to skin: aqueous permeation control through light-responsive amphiphilic polymer co-networks'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this