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Polymers 2015, 7(3), 552-579; doi:10.3390/polym7030552

Chitosan: Gels and Interfacial Properties

Norwegian Biopolymer Laboratory (NOBIPOL), Department of Biotechnology, Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU), 7491 Trondheim, Norway
Present address: NTNU Technology Transfer AS (TTO), Sem Sælands vei 14, 7491 Trondheim, Norway
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Academic Editor: Alexander Böker
Received: 19 December 2014 / Revised: 19 February 2015 / Accepted: 5 March 2015 / Published: 13 March 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Chitin and Chitosans)
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Abstract

Chitosan is a unique biopolymer in the respect that it is abundant, cationic, low-toxic, non-immunogenic and biodegradable. The relative occurrence of the two monomeric building units (N-acetyl-glucosamine and d-glucosamine) is crucial to whether chitosan is predominantly an ampholyte or predominantly a polyelectrolyte at acidic pH-values. The chemical composition is not only crucial to its surface activity properties, but also to whether and why chitosan can undergo a sol–gel transition. This review gives an overview of chitosan hydrogels and their biomedical applications, e.g., in tissue engineering and drug delivery, as well as the chitosan’s surface activity and its role in emulsion formation, stabilization and destabilization. Previously unpublished original data where chitosan acts as an emulsifier and flocculant are presented and discussed, showing that highly-acetylated chitosans can act both as an emulsifier and as a flocculant. View Full-Text
Keywords: chitosan hydrogels; tissue engineering; drug delivery; surface activity; emulsion stabilization; optical tweezers; flocculation chitosan hydrogels; tissue engineering; drug delivery; surface activity; emulsion stabilization; optical tweezers; flocculation
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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. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Nilsen-Nygaard, J.; Strand, S.P.; Vårum, K.M.; Draget, K.I.; Nordgård, C.T. Chitosan: Gels and Interfacial Properties. Polymers 2015, 7, 552-579.

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