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Open AccessArticle

Tailoring Multi-Level Structural and Practical Features of Gelatin Films by Varying Konjac Glucomannan Content and Drying Temperature

1
Glyn O. Phillips Hydrocolloid Research Centre at HBUT, School of Food and Biological Engineering, Hubei University of Technology, Wuhan 430068, Hubei province, China
2
Sichuan Sanlian New Materials CO., LTD., Chengdu 610041, China
3
Group for Cereals and Oils Processing, College of Food Science and Technology, Key Laboratory of Environment Correlative Dietology (Ministry of Education), Huazhong Agricultural University, Wuhan 430070, Hubei, China
4
Faculty of Engineering, University of Nottingham, Nottingham NG7 2RD, UK
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Polymers 2020, 12(2), 385; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym12020385
Received: 25 December 2019 / Revised: 25 January 2020 / Accepted: 3 February 2020 / Published: 8 February 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Polymers in Agriculture and Food Science)
Here, we tailored the multi-level structural and practical (mechanical/hydrophilic) features of gelatin films by varying the konjac glucomannan (KGM) content and the film-forming temperatures (25 and 40 °C). The addition of KGM apparently improved the mechanical properties and properly increased the hydrophilicity. With the lower temperature (25 °C), the increase in KGM reduced the gelatin crystallites of films, with detectable KGM–gelatin interactions, nanostructures, and micron-scale cracks. These structural features, with increased KGM and negligibly-occurred derivatizations, caused initially an insignificant decrease and then an increase in the strength, with a generally-increased elongation. The higher temperature (40 °C) could reduce the strength and slightly increase the elongation, related to the reduced crystallites of especially gelatin. With this higher temperature, the increase in KGM concurrently increased the strength and the elongation, mainly associated with the increased KGM and crystallites. Additionally, the increase in KGM made the film more hydrophilic; the multi-scale structural changes of films did not dominantly affect the changing trend of hydrophilicity.
Keywords: konjac glucomannan/gelatin film; multi-level structure; practical features konjac glucomannan/gelatin film; multi-level structure; practical features
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MDPI and ACS Style

Qiao, D.; Wang, Z.; Cai, C.; Yin, S.; Qian, H.; Zhang, B.; Jiang, F.; Fei, X. Tailoring Multi-Level Structural and Practical Features of Gelatin Films by Varying Konjac Glucomannan Content and Drying Temperature. Polymers 2020, 12, 385.

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