Reg.no- 10809450Course- B Tech-M.Tech( IT)
Biodegradable polymers are designed to degrade upon disposal by the action of livingorganisms. Extraordinary progress has been made in the development of practical processes and products from polymers such as starch, cellulose, and lactic acid. The needto create alternative biodegradable water-soluble polymers for down-the-drain productssuch as detergents and cosmetics has taken on increasing importance. Consumers have,however, thus far attached little or no added value to the property of biodegradability,forcing industry to compete head-to-head on a costperformance basis with existingfamiliar products. In addition, no suitable infrastructure for the disposal of biodegradablematerials exists as yet.Conventional polymers such as polyethylene and polypropylene persist for many yearsafter disposal. Built for the long haul, these polymers seem inappropriate for applicationsin which plastics are used for short time periods and then disposed. Furthermore, plasticsare often soiled by food and other biological substances, making physical recyclingof these materials impractical and generally undesirable. In contrast, biodegradable polymers (BPs) disposed in bioactive environments degrade by the enzymatic action of microorganisms such as bacteria, fungi, and algae. Their polymer chains may also be broken down by nonenzymatic processes such as chemical hydrolysis. Biodegradable polymers are often derived from plant processing of atmospheric CO2. Biodegradationconverts them to CO2, CH4, water, biomass, humic matter, and other natural substances.A variety of natural, synthetic, and biosynthetic polymers are bio and environmentallydegradable. A polymer based on a C-C backbone tends to resist degradation, whereasheteroatom-containing polymer backbones confer biodegradability. Biodegradability can,therefore, be engineered into polymers by the judicious addition of chemical linkagessuch as anhydride, ester, or amide bonds, among others. The usual mechanism for degradation is by hydrolysis or enzymatic cleavage of the labile heteroatom bonds,resulting in a scission of the polymer backbone. Macroorganisms can eat and, sometimes,digest polymers, and also initiate a mechanical, chemical, or enzymatic aging.
Biodegradable polymers with hydrolyzable chemical bonds are researched extensivelyfor biomedical, pharmaceutical, agricultural, and packaging applications.
In order to beused in medical devices and controlled-drug-release applications, the biodegradable polymer must be biocompatible and meet other criteria to be qualified as biomaterial- processable, sterilizable, and capable of controlled stability or degradation in response to biological conditions.
The chemical nature of the degradation products, rather than of the polymer itself, often critically influences biocompatibility. Poly(esters) based on