A comparative study of the potential of acrylic and sol-gel polymers for molecular imprinting

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The successful molecular imprinting of 2-aminopyridine (2-apy) in bulk polymerisations of acrylic and sol-gel based polymers has been achieved. Both polymeric systems reveal varying degrees of affinity in rebinding the original template as well as a number of structural analogues. Rebinding was conducted in chloroform, acetonitrile and methanol in order to assess the role of hydrogen bonding in imprinting. The acrylic imprinted polymer retained approximately 50% of the template in rebinding studies in chloroform compared to 100% for the sol-gel. However, this higher affinity for the sol-gel was accompanied by a higher degree of non-specific binding. While the acrylic polymer performed poorly in acetonitrile, the sol-gel maintained a high degree of discrimination. The acrylic polymer exhibited little discrimination between imprinted and reference polymers for 3-aminopyridine (3-apy) indicating the high selectivity of the MIP polymer for 2-apy relative to 3-apy. This selectivity was reduced in acetonitrile. Selectivity of the sol-gel for 2-apy in chloroform was poor as 3-apy was retained to a similar degree. Comparable results were obtained in acetonitrile. 4-Aminopyridine (4-apy) bound strongly to all polymers in all solvents and proved very difficult to remove due to the high degree of non-specific binding for both polymeric matrices.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)52-60
Number of pages9
JournalAnalytica Chimica Acta
Issue number1 SPEC. ISS.
Publication statusPublished - 22 Jun 2005


  • 2-Aminopyridine
  • Acrylic
  • Molecular imprinting
  • Molecular recognition
  • Sol-gel


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