Programmable Emulsions via Nucleophile-Induced Covalent Surfactant Modifications

Ann Fernandez, Cassandra A. Zentner, Manisha Shivrayan, Emil Samson, Suchol Savagatrup, Jiaming Zhuang, Timothy M. Swager, S. Thayumanavan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Responsive surfactants designed with kinetic control are rare and offer new opportunities in generating tunable reactive assemblies. In this work, we discuss the design of novel molecular assemblies based on covalently triggerable surfactants programmed to respond exclusively to nucleophilic triggers to cause interfacial alterations. Through a formal SN2′-type Michael addition chemistry, these induced alterations at the interface of single and dynamic double emulsions can be kinetically tuned and brought about by various small molecule nucleophiles and functionalized nanoassemblies to cause macroscopic responses, such as bursting or morphology changes. In addition, separate responsive modalities can be used to further control the emulsion systems to enable cascade trigger behavior and programmed release applications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4663-4671
Number of pages9
JournalChemistry of Materials
Issue number11
StatePublished - Jun 9 2020
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemistry
  • General Chemical Engineering
  • Materials Chemistry


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