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Novel Chitosan-spotted Alginate Fibers From Wet-spinning Of Alginate Solutions Containing Emulsified Chitosan-citrate Complex And Their Characterization.

Anyarat Watthanaphanit, P. Supaphol, T. Furuike, S. Tokura, H. Tamura, R. Rujiravanit
Published 2009 · Chemistry, Medicine

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The major problem associated with the production of alginate/chitosan hybridized fibers by wet spinning is the formation of gels due to ionic interactions of the oppositely charged molecules of alginate and chitosan when these two polymers are directly mixed. Here, we proposed a novel method of using chitosan in the form of an emulsion. The emulsion was prepared by adding a primary emulsion of olive oil in a sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS) aqueous solution into a chitosan-citrate complex. The complexation of chitosan with citric acid is the key of this method. The citrate ions neutralize the positive charges of chitosan, rendering the chitosan-citrate complex to readily penetrate into the core of the SDS/olive oil micelles. The obtained emulsified chitosan-citrate complex (hereafter, the chitosan-citrate emulsion) of varying amount was then added into an alginate aqueous solution to prepare the alginate/chitosan spinning dope suspensions. The alginate/chitosan hybridized fibers showed spotty features of the emulsified chitosan-citrate complex particles locating close to the surface and the inside of the hybridized fibers. At the lowest content of incorporated chitosan (i.e., 0.5% w/w chitosan), both the tenacity and the elongation at break of the obtained chitosan-spotted alginate fibers were the greatest. Further increase in the chitosan content resulted in a monotonous decrease in the property values. Lastly, preliminary studies demonstrated that the obtained chitosan-spotted alginate fibers showed great promises as carriers for drug delivery.

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