Hydrogels de polygalacturonate réticulés par les ions Fe2+ : impact du mode d'association local sur les mécanismes de gélification, contrôle de la structure multi-échelle et des propriétés mécaniques.

Abstract : This pHD thesis describes the design of polygalacturonate hydrogels (polyGal) cross-linked by the Fe2+ cations, and their experimental characterization from the molecular scales up to the macroscopic scales, by combining EXAFS spectroscopy, Small Angle Neutron Scattering (SANS) and rheological measurements. We designed a robust gelling protocol that allowed to obtain reproducible cylindrical gels with controlled concentration gradients from the lower side to the upper side of the gel. The ratio [Fe]/[Gal] has a constant value all along the gel, which demonstrate that the Fe2+ cations are associated with 4 galacturonate units. The comparison of EXAFS measurements and molecular dynamics simulation has shown that these associations followed the "egg-box" model. The crosslinking mechanisms that control the structure of the network made by the chains at local scale is therefore the same throughout the whole gel, which is confirmed by SANS measurements. The formation of the macroscopic concentration gradients comes from the mechanisms that drive the cations diffusion through the gel during the gelation process. These gradients control the gels mechanical properties. Besides, we proved that the “egg-box" association enables to protect Fe2+ against oxidation, which gives to these hydrogels an applicative potential to cure anemia as they could allow to target iron under its bioavailable form up to the gut.We have extended the study to the design of hydrogels with other cations (Ca2+ et Zn2+). The macroscopic properties of these hydrogels are very close to that of the Fe2+-polyGal hydrogels because the cation diffusion that govern the formation of macroscopic gradients during the gelationg process are similar. The hydrogels have however different local structures because the cation- polyGal local association varies from one cation to another. All these results allowed us to propose a generalized mechanism that describes the polygalacturonate hydrogels formation for divalent cations, and thus to tune their structure over several scales. These hydrogels could therefore be some promising tools for the vectorization of active molecules and the control of their release.
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Aline Maire Du Poset. Hydrogels de polygalacturonate réticulés par les ions Fe2+ : impact du mode d'association local sur les mécanismes de gélification, contrôle de la structure multi-échelle et des propriétés mécaniques.. Biotechnologie. Université Bourgogne Franche-Comté, 2018. Français. ⟨NNT : 2018UBFCK029⟩. ⟨tel-02297444⟩

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