A self-degradable hydrogel sensor for a nerve agent tabun surrogate through a self-propagating cascade

Date
2021-09-22
Authors
Lee, Doo-Hee
Valenzuela, Stephanie A.
Dominguez, Manuel N.
Otsuka, Mai
Milliron, Delia J.
Anslyn, Eric V.
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Volume Title
Publisher
Elsevier
Abstract

Nerve agents that irreversibly deactivate the enzyme acetylcholin- esterase are extremely toxic weapons of mass destruction. Thus, developing methods to detect these lethal agents is important. To create an optical sensor for a surrogate of the nerve agent tabun, as well as a physical barrier that dissolves in response to this analyte, we devise a network hydrogel that decomposes via a self-propagating cascade. A Meldrums acid-derived linker is incor- porated into a hydrogel that undergoes a declick reaction in response to thiols, thereby breaking network connections, which re- leases more thiols, propagating the response throughout the gel. A combination of chemical reactions triggered by the addition of the tabun mimic initiates the cascade. The dissolving barrier is used to release dyes, as well as nanocrystals that undergo a spontaneous aggregation. Thus, this sensing system for tabun generates a phys- ical response and the delivery of chemical agents in response to an initial trigger.

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Citation
Lee, DH; Valenzuela, SA; Dominguez, MN; Otsuka, M; Milliron, DJ; Anslyn, EV. A self-degradable hydrogel sensor for a nerve agent tabun surrogate through a self-propagating cascade. Cell Rep. Phys. Sci. 2021, 2(9), 100552-. DOI: 10.1016/j.xcrp.2021.100552 .