Journal Of Biomedical Materials Research
In this study, hydrophilic and hydrolytically degradable poly (ethylene glycol) (PEG) hydrogels were formed via Michael-type addition and employed for sustained delivery of a monoclonal antibody against the protective antigen of anthrax. Taking advantage of the PEG-induced precipitation of the antibody, burst release from the matrix was avoided. These hydrogels were able to release active antibodies in a controlled manner from 14 days to as long as 56 days in vitro by varying the polymer architectures and molecular weights of the precursors. Analysis of the secondary and tertiary structure and the in vitro activity of the released antibody showed that the encapsulation and release did not affect the protein conformation or functionality. The results suggest the promise for developing PEG-based carriers for sustained release of therapeutic antibodies against toxins in various applications.