US scientists have developed a stimuli-responsive, biodegradable star-shaped copolymer for targeted nutrient and pesticide delivery in plants. Controlled release to the phloem at an elevated pH makes these nanocarriers a promising step forward in modern agriculture.
Polymeric nanocarriers have already been studied for site-specific and controlled drug release in medicine, but their agricultural potential remains relatively unexplored. Existing methods of plant nutrient and pesticide delivery offer low efficiency so a site-specific strategy is in demand.
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Read the original journal article in ChemComm – it’s free to access until 29th June:
Synthesis of amphiphilic polysuccinimide star copolymers for responsive delivery in plants
Mingsheng Chen, Shaun P. Jensen, Megan R. Hill, Gloria Moore, Zhenli He and Brent S. Sumerlin
Chem. Commun., 2015, Advance Article
DOI: 10.1039/C5CC02726H, Communication