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Bio-based nanofibres - manufacture, processing and practical application
|Danuta Ciechańska , Janusz Kazimierczak , Arkadiusz S. Bloda , Magdalena Kucharska , Wacław Tomaszewski , Ewa Kopania|
Instytut Biopolimerów i Włókien Chemicznych w Łodzi, ul. M. Skłodowskiej-Curie 19/27, Łódź 90-570, Poland
In recent years at Institute of Biopolymers and Chemical Fibres (IBWCh) an extensive research has been carried out on development of methods for producing nanofibers and other nanostructures (e.g. nanoparticles, nanofibrids) from various polymers using different techniques. These techniques include biotechnological (bio-catalysis, biosynthesis), chemical and physico-mechanical (electrospinning, mechanical grinding, ultrasonication) methods. Functional nano-fibrous forms have a wide range of applications including medicine, filtration materials, electronics and the manufacture of bio-composites.
Electrospinning is the most widely used and most effective technique for production of micro-and nano-fibrous forms of biodegradable polymers from renewable sources, including medical grade chitosan, cellulose, PLA and co-PLA [1,2]. Nano-fibrous coatings produced by this method can be applied in dressing materials as a barrier against pathogens or in surface modification of implants (surgical mesh, vascular grafts), giving them biostimulative and biocompatible character.
The Institute has also developed the production technology of chitosan and chitosan-alginate micro- and nano-fibrids . The manufacturing process is carried out under dynamic conditions using a flow reactor. Developed polymeric micro- and nano-forms can be applied in haemostatic wound dressings produced in the form of non-wovens and sponges which are characterized by high fluid absorption  and also in modification of surgical implants.
In IBWCh research is conducted into obtaining cellulose nanofibers from waste plant biomass, which is a rich source of the polymer. Processes of cellulose extraction from vegetal raw materials and of production of micro- and nanofibrous forms involve thermo-mechanical, chemical, biotechnological as well as physical-mechanical methods. Cellulose nano-fibers get more and more attention because of their excellent mechanical properties which allow their application in production of various types of composites.
Another source of cellulose nanofibers is bacterial cellulose produced by certain strains of bacteria, especially of the genus Acetobacter. Bacterial cellulose is synthesized in the form of microfibrils creating highly entangled network of micro-and nanofibers. The resulting bio-nano-cellulose is characterized by high chemical purity, lack of lignin and hemicellulose, high crystallinity and degree of polymerization, which distinguishes it from other types of cellulose [5,6]. An important feature of bacterial cellulose is that it can be modified during its biosynthesis. Research on the production of bacterial cellulose-modified chitosan has been conducted at IBWCh for many years [5-7]. Modified nano-bio-cellulose may have numerous medical applications e.g. as an occlusive hydrogel wound dressing , a material of artificial blood vessels , or as a component of multilayer surgical mesh for hernia treatment . Research was also conducted at IBWCh on the use of modified bacterial cellulose for manufacture of high-grade loudspeaker membranes .
This work was carried out as a part of the research projects: PBZ-MNiSW-01/II/2007, DWM/233/Matera/2006, 3 T08E 012 28, R0501503, 3T09B06616, 068 31/3102 all supported by the Ministry of Science and Higher Education, Poland; and Strategic Research Project “Biomass application for the manufacture of environmentally friendly polymer materials” POIG 01.01.02.-10-123/09.
Presentation: Invited oral at Nano-Biotechnologia PL, by Danuta Ciechańska
See On-line Journal of Nano-Biotechnologia PL
Submitted: 2012-06-23 23:36 Revised: 2012-06-30 00:22