Advances in Waterborne Polyurethane-Based Biomaterials for Biomedical Applications

  • Eun Joo Shin
  • Soon Mo ChoiEmail author
Part of the Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology book series (AEMB, volume 1077)


Polyurethane (PU) is one of the most popular synthetic elastomers and widely employed in biomedical fields owing to the excellent biocompatibility and hemocompatibility known today. In addition, PU is simply prepared and its mechanical properties such as durability, elasticity, elastomer-like character, fatigue resistance, compliance or tolerance in the body during the healing, can be mediated by modifying the chemical structure. Furthermore, modification of bulk and surface by incorporating biomolecules such as anticoagulants or biorecognizable groups, or hydrophilic/hydrophobic balance is possible through altering chemical groups for PU structure. Such modifications have been designed to improve the acceptance of implant. For these reason, conventional solventborne (solvent-based) PUs have established the standard for high performance systems, and extensively used in medical devices such as dressings, tubing, antibacterial membrane , catheters to total artificial heart and blood contacting materials, etc. However, waterborne polyurethane (WPU) has been developed to improve the process of dissolving PU materials using toxic organic solvents, in which water is used as a dispersing solvent. The prepared WPU materials have many advantages, briefly (1) zero or very low levels of organic solvents, namely environmental-friendly (2) non-toxic, due to absence of isocyanate residues, and (3) good applicability caused by extensive structure/property diversity as well as an environment-friendly fabrication method resulting in increasing applicability. Therefore, WPUs are being in the spotlight as biomaterials used for biomedical applications. The purpose of this review is to introduce an environmental- friendly synthesis of WPU and consider the manufacturing process and application of WPU and/or WPU based nanocomposites as the viewpoint of biomaterials.


Polyurethane Waterborne Biomaterials Regenerative medicine Scaffold Tissue engineering 



This research was supported by the Basic Science Research Program of the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) funded by the Ministry of Education (NRF-2015R1C1A2A01056027 and NRF-2016R1A6A3A11930280).


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Organic Materials and Polymer EngineeringDong-A UniversityBusanSouth Korea
  2. 2.Regional Research Institute for Fiber & Fashion MaterialsYeungnam UniversityGyeongsanSouth Korea

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