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Article

Simple Strategies to Modulate the pH-Responsiveness of Lignosulfonate-Based Delivery Systems

Department of Molecular Sciences and Nanosystems, Ca’ Foscari University of Venice, Via Torino 155, 30172 Venezia-Mestre, Italy
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Academic Editors: Debora Puglia and Qinglin Wu
Materials 2022, 15(5), 1857; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma15051857
Received: 29 November 2021 / Revised: 4 February 2022 / Accepted: 28 February 2022 / Published: 2 March 2022
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Polymers: From Synthesis to Functional Properties)
The extensive use of non-degradable microplastics in a wide plethora of daily life products is causing serious pollution problems. More ecofriendly solutions are therefore urgently needed. In this context, the use of lignin, a largely available aromatic polymer, may represent a viable option. Due to the self-assembly ability of its molecules, lignin is in fact an ideal matrix for the fabrication of nanostructures. In this study, lignosulfonate microcapsules containing a limonene core were prepared and characterized in terms of their dimensions and of the physicochemical characteristics of the capsule-forming lignosulfonate molecules. The main purpose is to elucidate the key properties governing the pH-responsive behavior of the capsules to be able to achieve better control over the release kinetics of the entrapped compound(s). The results demonstrate that both the molecular weight and the concentration of sulfonate groups are the most important factors in this respect. Based on these findings, two strategies were followed to further tailor the capsules’ behavior: (i) fractionation of the starting lignosulfonate by solvent extraction and (ii) introduction of a specific additive in the formulation. The first approach permitted to fabricate highly resistant capsules both in acidic, as well as in alkaline conditions, while in the second case the chemical structure of the additive, the diester diveratryl sebacate, allowed for fast kinetics of release, as values above 70% were reached after 24 h of incubation at pH 4 and pH 12. View Full-Text
Keywords: lignin microcapsules; lignosulfonate; lignin fractionation; encapsulation of actives; ultrasonication; pH-responsive behavior; controlled release lignin microcapsules; lignosulfonate; lignin fractionation; encapsulation of actives; ultrasonication; pH-responsive behavior; controlled release
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MDPI and ACS Style

Sgarzi, M.; Gigli, M.; Giuriato, C.; Crestini, C. Simple Strategies to Modulate the pH-Responsiveness of Lignosulfonate-Based Delivery Systems. Materials 2022, 15, 1857. https://doi.org/10.3390/ma15051857

AMA Style

Sgarzi M, Gigli M, Giuriato C, Crestini C. Simple Strategies to Modulate the pH-Responsiveness of Lignosulfonate-Based Delivery Systems. Materials. 2022; 15(5):1857. https://doi.org/10.3390/ma15051857

Chicago/Turabian Style

Sgarzi, Massimo, Matteo Gigli, Charlotte Giuriato, and Claudia Crestini. 2022. "Simple Strategies to Modulate the pH-Responsiveness of Lignosulfonate-Based Delivery Systems" Materials 15, no. 5: 1857. https://doi.org/10.3390/ma15051857

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