Combinatorial Biomaterials Discovery Strategy to Identify New Macromolecular Cryoprotectants

Christopher Stubbs, Kathryn A. Murray, Toru Ishibe, Robert T. Mathers, Matthew I. Gibson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Scopus citations


Cryoprotective agents (CPAs) are typically solvents or small molecules, but there is a need for innovative CPAs to reduce toxicity and increase cell yield, for the banking and transport of cells. Here we use a photochemical high-throughput discovery platform to identify macromolecular cryoprotectants, as rational design approaches are currently limited by the lack of structure-property relationships. Using liquid handling systems, 120 unique polyampholytes were synthesized using photopolymerization with RAFT agents. Cryopreservation screening identified "hit" polymers and nonlinear trends between composition and function, highlighting the requirement for screening, with polymer aggregation being a key factor. The most active polymers reduced the volume of dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) required to cryopreserve a nucleated cell line, demonstrating the potential of this approach to identify materials for cell storage and transport.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)290-294
Number of pages5
JournalACS Macro Letters
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 18 2020

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Organic Chemistry
  • Polymers and Plastics
  • Inorganic Chemistry
  • Materials Chemistry


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