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Polymers 2018, 10(7), 712; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym10070712

A Novel In Situ Self-Assembling Fabrication Method for Bacterial Cellulose-Electrospun Nanofiber Hybrid Structures

1
Key Laboratory of Eco-Textiles, Ministry of Education, Jiangnan University, Wuxi 214122, China
2
College of Textiles, Donghua University, Songjiang District, Shanghai 201600, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 25 April 2018 / Revised: 29 May 2018 / Accepted: 11 June 2018 / Published: 28 June 2018
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Abstract

Self-assembling fabrication methodology has recently attracted attention for the production of bio-degradable polymer nanocomposites. In this research work, bacterial cellulose/electrospun nanofiber hybrid mats (BC/CA-ENM) were formed by incorporating cellulose acetate electrospun nanofiber membranes (CA-ENMs) in the fermentation media, followed by in situ self-assembly of bacterial cellulose (BC) nanofibers. ENMs exhibit excessive hydrophobicity, attributed to their high crystallinity and reorientation of hydrophobic groups at the air/solid interfaces. We aimed to improve the hydrophilic and other functional properties of ENMs. As-prepared nanohybrid structures were characterized using SEM and FTIR. SEM results revealed that in situ self-assembling of BC nanofibers onto the electrospun membrane’s surface and penetration into pores gradually increased with extended fermentation periods. The surface hydrophilicity and water absorption capacity of as-prepared hybrid mats was also tested and analyzed. Hybrid mats were observably more hydrophilic than an electrospun membrane and more hydrophobic compared to BC films. In addition, the incorporation of CA electrospun membranes in the culture media as a foundation for BC nanofiber growth resulted in improved tensile strength of the hybrid nanocomposites compared to ENMs. Overall, the results indicated the successful fabrication of nanocomposites through a novel approach, with samples demonstrating improved functional properties. View Full-Text
Keywords: in situ self-assembly approach; bacterial cellulose; bio-polymers; electrospun nanofiber membranes (ENM); hydrophilicity; functional properties; hybrid mats in situ self-assembly approach; bacterial cellulose; bio-polymers; electrospun nanofiber membranes (ENM); hydrophilicity; functional properties; hybrid mats
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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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Naeem, M.A.; Lv, P.; Zhou, H.; Naveed, T.; Wei, Q. A Novel In Situ Self-Assembling Fabrication Method for Bacterial Cellulose-Electrospun Nanofiber Hybrid Structures. Polymers 2018, 10, 712.

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