Optimization, evaluation, and characterization of molecularly imprinted polymers

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The underlying mechanisms for molecular recognition exhibited by the imprinting effect can be attributed to two processes. The pre-organization of complementary functional groups in the polymer by the template and the formation of a shape-selective cavity that is complementary to the template. However, measurements of binding and selectivity combine all effects contributing to molecular recognition in MIPs into one figure of merit. If the two molecules being compared are not enantiomers, then there are other factors which contribute to differential binding such as size or different partitioning effects due to differences in polarity, hydrophobicity, ionization state or shape and/or conformational effects. The best probe for the imprinting effect is therefore an enantiomeric pair. Therefore, the first section of this article discusses enantioselective optimization of polymerization, the second section will review methods employed for evaluation of MIPs and the last section will cover materials science methods used to characterize the physical properties of MIP materials. © 2005 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

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Advanced Drug Delivery Reviews

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