Dissertations, Theses, and Capstone Projects

Date of Degree


Document Type


Degree Name





Michal Kruk


Shuiqin Zhou

Committee Members

Stephen O'Brien

Sharon M Loverde

Subject Categories

Materials Chemistry | Polymer Chemistry


Mesoporous Silica, Asymmetric Nanotube, Short Silica Nanotubes, Polymer Based- Insulin Delivery, Glucose Responsive Microgel, VPBA - Based Insulin Delivery


The original research work in this dissertation is about the use of polymers in two significantly important areas. One involves creating mesoporous silica materials with various morphologies using a mixed Pluronic surfactant system made up of two poly(ethylene oxide)-poly(propylene oxide)-poly(ethylene oxide) (PEO-PPO-PEO) surfactants, one of which contains long hydrophilic (PEO) blocks and the other has a significantly higher proportion of hydrophobic PPO . In addition, a glucose responsive core-shell type microgel was also developed for shifting the glucose responsive volume phase transition by using polymeric nanomaterials.

Chapter 1 of the dissertation discussed some historical background of synthesis and uses of mesoporous materials and a brief review of some related topics like the development of ordered mesoporous materials, such as MCM-41 and SBA-15, soft-templated synthesis of silica nanotubes, short silica nanotubes, and synthesis of asymmetric silica nanotubse. It also includes the theory and background of stimuli-responsive microgels. The second chapter of this dissertation discusses the effect of anionic surfactant sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS) on controlling the length of the silica nanotubes templated by Pluronic F127 and P104 surfactant mixtures and using tetraethyl orthosilicate as a silica precursor. The anionic SDS surfactant can also significantly control the length of the silica and organosilica nanotubes templated by a wide range of surfactant mixtures, as is discussed in Chapter 3. Chapter 4 will discuss the synthesis of Janus-like asymmetric (single bulb) organosilica nanotubes and double-bulbs organosilica nanotubes using Pluronic F127 and P123 surfactant mixture and using bis(triethoxysilyl)ethane precursor. Synthesis of a new type of silica nanomaterials (nanotube-wrapped hollow silica spheres) templated by Pluronic F127 and P123 and using tetraethyl orthosilicate precursor is discussed in Chapter 5. In Chapter 6, the synthesis of a boronic acid containing glucose-responsive core-shell type microgel is discussed for on-site controllable smart insulin delivery. The original studies described herein is summarized in Chapter 7 at the end.

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