We developed a mixed polymer brush, which consists of temperature-responsive polymer and cationic polymer modified beads as functional chromatographic matrices, for temperature-modulated multiple hydrophobic and electrostatic interactions. The mixed polymer brush was modified on silica beads through the combination of reversible addition−fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) polymerization of N,N-dimethylaminopropyl acrylamide (DMAPAAm) and surface initiated atom transfer radical polymerization (ATRP) of N-isopropylacrylamide (NIPAAm). Zeta potential measurement of the mixed polymer brush revealed that the zeta potential increased with increasing temperature, which was attributed to the exposed PDMAPAAm on the beads arising from the shrinking of PNIPAAm upon increasing the temperature. The prepared beads were used as the packing material of high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) columns, and the elution behavior of steroids, adenosine nucleotides, and proteins through the column was observed. The retention time of steroids increased with increasing the column temperature because of the dehydration of PNIPAAm in the mixed polymer brush. Adenosine nucleotides were also retained by the columns, which was attributed to the electrostatic interaction with PDMAPAAm in the mixed polymer brush. Several proteins were adsorbed on the column at elevated temperatures because of the enhanced electrostatic interaction of exposed PDMAPAAm and the enhanced hydrophobic interaction resulting from the dehydration of PNIPAAm. By exploiting this unique property, mixtures of proteins could be separated by simply changing the column temperature. These results indicate that the developed mixed polymer brush modified beads would be useful as functional chromatographic packing matrices for thermally-modulated multiple hydrophobic and electrostatic interactions.
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