Polyethylene glycol (PEG) is a hydrophilic polymer. It can be easily synthesized by the anionic ring opening polymerization of ethylene oxide, into a range molecular weights and variety of end groups. When crosslinked into networks PEG can have high water content, forming “hydrogels”. PEG is a suitable material for biological applications because it does not trigger an immune response.
Poly (ethylene glycol) (PEG) can be used to functionalize magnetic nanoparticles in combination with nonionic surfactant Tween 80. PEG functionalization improves the biocompatibility of magnetite nanoparticles. It also reduces the surface charge and maintains the magnetic characteristics of nanoparticles.
PEG can be used as an exterior coating for the pharmaceutical final dosage forms. This can avoid moisture from encountering active pharmaceutical ingredients. For example, Naproxen solid dispersions are coated with PEG by drop printing technique. The PEG layer protects the solid dispersions from moisture-accelerated crystallization and enhances their stability.
Nanostructured hydroxyapatite (HAP) can be prepared by a sol-gel technique using PEG as an organic modifier. The addition of PEG has an influence on the morphology of HAP particles. At high temperatures, more flexible PEG molecules result in the formation of large-sized HAP platelets. At low synthesis temperatures, less flexible PEG colloids form nanostructured HAP.
PEG powder can also be used as a laxative agent.