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Mar. Drugs 2011, 9(12), 2488-2498; doi:10.3390/md9122488
Article

Chitosan, the Marine Functional Food, Is a Potent Adsorbent of Humic Acid

1,†
, 2,†
, 3
, 2
, 4
 and 2,5,*
1 Environment and Biotechnology Department, Refining and Manufacturing Research Institute, CPC Corporation, Chia-Yi 60051, Taiwan 2 Department of Chemical Engineering, Ming Chi University of Technology, 84 Gung-Juan Road, Taishan, New Taipei 24301, Taiwan 3 Department of Parasitology, College of Medicine, Chang Gung University, 259 Wen-Hwa 1st Road, Kweishan, Tao-Yuan 24301, Taiwan 4 Department of Medical Biotechnology and Laboratory Science, Chang Gung University, 259 Wen-Hwa 1st Road, Kweishan, Tao-Yuan 33302, Taiwan 5 Graduate School of Biochemical Engineering, Ming Chi University of Technology, 84 Gung-Juan Road, Taishan, New Taipei 24301, Taiwan These authors contributed equally to this work.
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 18 October 2011 / Revised: 3 November 2011 / Accepted: 3 November 2011 / Published: 28 November 2011
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Functional Food)
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Abstract

Chitosan is prepared by the deacetylation of chitin, the second-most abundant biopolymer in nature, and has applicability in the removal of dyes, heavy metals and radioactive waste for pollution control. In weight-reduction remedies, chitosan is used to form hydrogels with lipids and to depress the intestinal absorption of lipids. In this study, an experimental method was implemented to simulate the effect of chitosan on the adsorption of humic acid in the gastrointestinal tract. The adsorption capacity of chitosan was measured by its adsorption isotherm and analyzed using the Langmuir equation. The results showed that 3.3 grams of humic acid was absorbed by 1 gram of chitosan. The adsorption capacity of chitosan was much greater than that of chitin, diethylaminoethyl-cellulose or activated charcoal. Cellulose and carboxymethyl-cellulose, a cellulose derivative with a negative charge, could not adsorb humic acid in the gastrointestinal tract. This result suggests that chitosan entraps humic acid because of its positive charge.
Keywords: chitosan; humic acid; adsorbent; Blackfoot chitosan; humic acid; adsorbent; Blackfoot
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Chen, J.-K.; Yeh, C.-H.; Wang, L.-C.; Liou, T.-H.; Shen, C.-R.; Liu, C.-L. Chitosan, the Marine Functional Food, Is a Potent Adsorbent of Humic Acid. Mar. Drugs 2011, 9, 2488-2498.

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