Amphiphilic block copolymers can self-assemble in water into various stable morphologies which resemble key cell structures, notably filaments and membranes. Filamentous 'worms' of copolymer, microns-long, are briefly introduced, and related dynamics of copolymer vesicle 'polymersomes' are reviewed. Fluorescence visualization of single worms stretched under flow demonstrates their stability as well as a means to control conformation. Polymersome membranes have been more thoroughly studied, especially copolymer molecular weight effects. We summarize results suggestive of a transition from Rouse-like behavior to entangled chains. Viewed together, the results ask the question: what physics are needed next to mimic cell activities such as crawling?
- Block copolymer
- Worm micelles