Polylactic acid (PLA) synthesis and modifications: A review

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This article reviews various methods of synthesizing polycondensation and ring-opening polymerization and modifying properties of polylactic acid (PLA), which may be used as biomaterials, such as a drug carrier in a drug delivery system, as a cell scaffold and suture in tissue engineering, and as packaging materials in packaging engineering field. Copolymerization of lactide with other monomers or polymers such as malic acid, polyethylene glycol (PEG), polyglycolic acid (PGA), or dextran, as well as blending polylactide with natural derivatives and other methods of modification are discussed. Surface modifications of PLA-type copolymers, such as surface coating, chemical modification, and plasma treatment are described.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)259-264
Number of pages6
JournalFrontiers of Chemistry in China
Issue number3
StatePublished - Aug 1 2009


  • Copolymerization
  • Modification
  • Plasma treatment
  • Polylactic acid
  • Surface coating
  • Synthesis


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