Hydrogels represent nowadays important material either from scientific point of view, as well as for the applications. This contribution is focused on the study of transport properties of reactive hydrogels based on agarose. This polysaccharide can at certain conditions form hydrogel matrix, which represent ideal carrier matrix for additional substances (e.g. polyelectrolytes). Incorporation of specific modifiers allows tuning the final properties (e.g. reactivity) of these hydrogel in respect to the needs of the application. The experimental part of present work was focused on the observation and quantification of the transport of Rhodamine 6G in individual reactive agarose-based hydrogels. Two basic approaches were used (both based on diffusion processes). Firstly, the simple macroscopic observation of diffusion of Rhodamine 6G from solution into cuvettes containing individual agarose-based reactive hydrogels (diffusion model of constant source) was applied. The second used technique was based on Rhodamine 6G self-diffusion measurement (using the method of fluorescence correlation spectroscopy). Both methods showed to be valuable in deeper description and characterization of the interactions and mobility of selected probe in reactive agarose-based hydrogel matrices. The obtained data from diffusion experiments were correlated with several basic structural characteristics of studied hydrogels (internal pH value, content of water, wettability…) as well as their mechanical properties (mainly rheological). The results indicated that the transport and barrier properties of individual agarose-based hydrogels are significantly affected by charge of the polyelectrolyte, which is incorporated in hydrogels matrix, as well as by its charge density.Keywords: diffusion, fluorescence correlation spectroscopy, hydrogels, polyelectrolyte, reactivity
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