Dissertations and Theses

Date of Award


Document Type



Biomedical Engineering

First Advisor

Steven B. Nicoll

Second Advisor

Mitchell B. Schaffler


Carboxymethylcellulose (CMC), dialdehyde, (SEC-MALS)


Reparative medical techniques, in conjunction with existing and emerging tissue adherents and sealants, offer practicing physicians a wide variety of tools to improve the functionality, performance, and safety of surgical interventions. Carboxymethylcellulose (CMC) is a plant-derived polymer that is cytocompatible, biocompatible, biodegradable, and inexpensive. The need for a non-toxic but strongly adherent material motivated the development of an injectable bioadhesive system containing CMC modified with functional methacrylate and aldehyde groups that could potentially be used as an annulus fibrosus sealant or as a supplement to existing wound closure materials. After modification, the polymer was characterized via NMR spectroscopy, Schiff’s base reaction, and size exclusion chromatography with multi-angle light scattering (SEC-MALS). The adhesive strength of the material was determined by lap shear testing with porcine skin. High molecular weight and medium molecular weight methacrylated dialdehyde carboxymethylcellulose (MeDCMCHV & MeDCMCMV) were engineered and MeDCMCHV was combined with low viscosity methacrylated CMC (MeCMCLV1) to produce an adhesive hydrogel. The percent oxidation and methacrylation was measured to be 21.1 ± .84 % and 49.0% for MeDCMCHV2. The percent methacrylation of MeCMCLV1 was determined to be 30.6%. Various ratios of MeDCMCHV to MeCMCLV were tested via lap shear testing and the best combination possessed a shear adhesive strength of 6.022 ± 1.456 kPa. The dispersity index (Đ) was calculated to be 1.93 for MeDCMCHV and 2.94 for MeDCMCMV. The creation of an adhesive from MeDCMCHV will provide a foundation for the development of cellulose-based annulus fibrosus sealant with stronger adhesive strength and highly tunable properties such as swelling-ratio, pore size, and degradation profile.



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.