Abstract: Sol-gel methodologies are advantageous in the preparation of hybrid materials in front of the conventional addition of nanoparticles, because of the fine dispersion of the inorganic phase that can be reached in epoxy matrices. In addition, the use of organoalkoxysilanes as coupling agents allows covalent linkage between organic and inorganic phases, which is the key point in the improvement of mechanical properties. The sol-gel process involves hydrolysis and condensation reactions under mild conditions, starting from hydrolysable metal alkoxides, generally alkoxy silanes. Using the sol-gel procedure, the viscosity of the formulation is maintained, which is an important issue in coating applications, whereas the transparency of the polymer matrix is also maintained. However, only the proper combination of the chemistries and functionalities of both organic and inorganic structures leads to thermosets with the desired characteristics. The adequate preparation of hybrid epoxy thermosets enables their improvement in characteristics such as mechanical properties (modulus, hardness, scratch resistance), thermal and flame resistance, corrosion and antimicrobial protection, and even optical performance among others.
Abstract: Surface modification of dental implants is a key process in the production of these medical devices, and especially titanium implants used in the dental practice are commonly subjected to surface modification processes before their clinical use. A wide range of treatments, such as sand blasting, acid etching, plasma etching, plasma spray deposition, sputtering deposition and cathodic arc deposition, have been studied over the years in order to improve the performance of dental implants. Improving or accelerating the osseointegration process is usually the main goal of these surface processes, but the improvement of biocompatibility and the prevention of bacterial adhesion are also of considerable importance. In this review, we report on the research of the recent years in the field of surface treatments and coatings deposition for the improvement of dental implants performance, with a main focus on the osseointegration acceleration, the reduction of bacterial adhesion and the improvement of biocompatibility.
Abstract: In the present research the antimicrobial activity of two active packaging materials on the spoilage microbiota of fresh salmon fillets was tested. A PET-coated film (PET: Polyethylene Terephthalate) containing lysozyme and lactoferrin was tested in parallel with a carvacrol-coextruded multilayer film. Salmon fillet samples were stored up to four days at 0 and 5 °C, comparatively. The carvacrol multilayer film was found effective in preventing mesophiles and psychrotrophs at shorter storage time and at lower temperature (4.0 compared to 5.0 log CFU/g in the control sample—CFU: Colony Forming Units). Lysozyme/lactoferrin-coated PET was instead efficient in decreasing H2S-producing bacteria at longer storage time and higher temperature (2.7 instead of 4.7 log CFU/g in the control sample). Even if is not intended as a way to “clean” a contaminated food product, an active package solution can indeed contribute to reducing the microbial population in food items, thus lowering the risk of food-related diseases.
Abstract: This study was aimed at developing new films based on isotactic polypropylene (iPP) for food packaging applications using zinc oxide (ZnO) with submicron dimension particles obtained by spray pyrolysis. To improve compatibility with iPP, the ZnO particles were coated with stearic acid (ZnOc). Composites based on iPP with 2 wt % and 5 wt % of ZnOc were prepared in a twin-screw extruder and then filmed by a calender. The effect of ZnOc on the properties of iPP were assessed and compared with those obtained in previous study on iPP/ZnO and iPP/iPPgMA/ZnO. For all composites, a homogeneous distribution and dispersion of ZnOc was obtained indicating that the coating with stearic acid of the ZnO particles reduces the surface polarity mismatch between iPP and ZnO. The iPP/ZnOc composite films have relevant antibacterial properties with respect to E. coli, higher thermal stability and improved mechanical and impact properties than the pure polymer and the composites iPP/ZnO and iPP/iPPgMA/ZnO. This study demonstrated that iPP/ZnOc films are suitable materials for potential application in the active packaging field.
Abstract: The design of anti-icing surfaces presents an interface with high causal density that has been challenging to quantify in terms of individual contributions of various interactions and environmental factors. In this commentary, we highlight the role of interfacial water structure as uniquely expressing the physico-chemical aspects of ice accretion. Recent work on the topic that focuses on control of interfacial structure is discussed along with results by our research group on wettability of chemically modified surfaces and the role of ions in modulating interfacial structure. Suggestions for systematic studies to understand the fundamental interactions at play in ice adhesion at interfaces are made especially in the under-explored areas of cooperative hydrogen bonding and the role of solvated counterions. Insights expected from such studies would contribute to design of robust anti-icing hierarchies.