Recent advances in synthesis of functional poly-ε-caprolactone (PCL) and its self-assembly behavior, as well
as application in drug delivery have been reviewed. Three strategies including end group functionalization, postpolymerization
modification and new monomer preparation have been summarized to show possibilities for PCL derivatives.
Complex architectures like cyclic and multi-arm PCL have been emphasized. Both chemical composition and topology
have coordinately affected the property of PCL-based materials on the molecular level. A large variety of PCLs with
sophisticated topology like block, graft, cyclic, and star have displayed versatile morphologies in solutions. These selfassembly
aggregates have been applied as nano-scaled drug carries either to physically encapsulate or covalently conjugate
drugs for controlled release. In particular, PCL with pendant groups has been extensively studied to illustrate the
noncovalent interaction with drugs and the influence on the release profile. In general, functional PCL has shown great
potential in construct of complicated supramolecular structures, and thus as ideal drug carriers for sustainable and targeted
Keywords: Functional poly-ε-caprolactone (PCL), modification, self-assembly, drug delivery.
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