Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland
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Polypeptide nanoparticles obtained from emulsion polymerization of amino acid N-carboxyanhydrides

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journal contribution
posted on 2021-04-16, 13:45 authored by Jaco Jacobs, Dražen Pavlović, Hannah Prydderch, Mohammad-Amin Moradi, Emmanuel Ibarboure, Johan PA Heuts, Sebastien Lecommandoux, Andreas HeiseAndreas Heise
Polypeptide nanoparticles were obtained by the miniemulsion polymerization of S-(o-nitrobenzyl)-l-cysteine (NBC) N-carboxyanhydride (NCA). Through process optimization, reaction conditions were identified that allowed the polymerization of the water sensitive NCA to yield nanoparticles of about 220 nm size. Subsequent UV-irradiation of the nanoparticle emulsions caused the in situ removal of the nitrobenzyl group and particle cross-linking through disulfide bond formation accompanied by the shrinkage of the particles.


European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme for research, technological development and demonstration under grant agreements no. 289253 (REFINE)

European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant agreement no. 748364

Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) Technology Innovation Development Award (TIDA) under grant agreement no. 15/ TIDA/2957



This document is the unedited Author’s version of a Submitted Work that was subsequently accepted for publication in Journal of the American Chemical Society, copyright © American Chemical Society after peer review. To access the final edited and published work see

Published Citation

Jacobs J, Pavlović D, Prydderch H, Moradi MA, Ibarboure E, Heuts JPA, Lecommandoux S, Heise A. Polypeptide nanoparticles obtained from emulsion polymerization of amino acid N-carboxyanhydrides. Journal of the American Chemical Society;141(32):12522-12526.

Publication Date

26 July 2019

PubMed ID



  • Chemistry

Research Area

  • Chemistry and Pharmaceutical Sciences
  • Biomaterials and Regenerative Medicine


American Chemical Society (ACS)


  • Accepted Version (Postprint)