Tough Polymeric Material

Hydrogels with high water content have been expected to be applied for biomedical materials due to their high biocompatibility. Since 2000, various types of tough polymer gels have been reported. We have for the first time discovered reversible strain-induced crystallization of polymer chains in hydrogels and developed tough and highly reversible polymer gels (2021 Science). The reversibility of the strain-induced crystallization allows the tough hydrogels to rapidly recover from mechanical stress, which is important for artificial ligaments and joints.


related paper and review

  1. Original paper
    C. Liu, N. Morimoto, L. Jiang, S. Kawahara, T. Noritomi, H. Yokoyama, K. Mayumi*, K. Ito*
    “Tough Hydrogels with Rapid Self-reinforcement”
    Science, 372, 1078-1081 (2021).
  2. Press release
    Healing hydrogels: Biocompatible hydrogel materials can rapidly recover from mechanical stress

Structure and Dynamics of Polymeric and Soft Materials

We investigate nano-structure and dynamics of multi-component polymer and soft matter systems by using small-angle neutron scattering (SANS) and quasi-elastic neutron scattering (QENS) with deuterium labelling. The selective deuterium labelling enables us to separately observe the structure and dynamics of each component. By combining SANS and QENS measurements with molecular dynamics simulations, we aim to reveal molecular mechanisms for macroscopic properties of polymer and soft matter systems.

Neutron Scattering width Deuterium Labelling

related paper and review

  1. Original paper
    Yusuke Yasuda, Yuta Hidaka, Koichi Mayumi*, Takeshi Yamada, Kazushi Fujimoto, Susumu Okazaki, Hideaki Yokoyama, Kohzo Ito*
    “Molecular Dynamics of Polyrotaxane in Solution Investigated by Quasi-Elastic Neutron Scattering and Molecular Dynamics Simulation: Sliding Motion of Rings on Polymer”
    Journal of the American Chemical Society, 141, 9655-9663 (2019): supplementary journal cover.
  2. Review
    Koichi Mayumi
    “Molecular dynamics and structure of polyrotaxane in solution”
    Polymer Journal, 53, 581-586 (2021).