Special Issue "Engineering Bionanocomposites for Functional Applications"

A special issue of Nanomaterials (ISSN 2079-4991).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (10 April 2019).

Special Issue Editor

Prof. Dr. Ilker Bayer
Website
Guest Editor
Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia, Genoa, Italy
Interests: bioinspired surfaces; wetting; biopolymers; polymer nanocomposites
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Nanostructured composites based on biomaterials can be referred to as bionanocomposites. They have been emerging as sustainable hybrid alternatives in various applications where non-degradable polymer composites have been traditionally exploited. In the last decade or so, they have been actively researched in several technology areas, including regenerative medicine, electronics, food packaging, and water remediation. They are designed by intelligently combining natural polymers and inorganic or organic solids and nanomaterials, and feature nanoscale dimensional attributes. Properties inherent to biopolymers such as biocompatibility and biodegradability render them highly suitable for regenerative medicine, and even for food science and technology. Sometimes, known as green nanocomposites, their development and application merge as a new interdisciplinary field closely related to significant topics such as polymer science, graphene, biomineralization processes, emulsion science and technology, bioinspired materials, and biomimetic systems.

This special issue intends to attract both research and review articles on the fabrication, characterization, and functional applications of bionanocomposites. Topics of interest are thermomechanical properties of bionanocomposites, sustainable electronic materials employing graphene, cellulose-based nanocomposites, bionanocomposites for drug delivery, food packaging, tissue engineering in regenerative medicine, bio-based sensor applications, and finally,  biodegradable nanostructured hydrogels.

Prof. Dr. Ilker Bayer
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • bionanocomposites
  • nanocellulose
  • hydroxyapatite
  • biopolymer nanocomposites
  • polylactic acid
  • polycaprolactone
  • biopolymer–graphene composites
  • hydrogel nanocomposites
  • polyhydroxyalkanoates

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle
Stacked-Cup Carbon Nanotube Flexible Paper Based on Soy Lecithin and Natural Rubber
Nanomaterials 2019, 9(6), 824; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano9060824 - 31 May 2019
Cited by 1
Abstract
Stacked-cup carbon nanotubes (SCCNTs) are generally referred to as carbon nanofibers (CNFs). SCCNTs are much less expensive to fabricate and are regarded as good polymer modifiers suitable for large-scale production. Flexible, SCCNT-based soy lecithin biocomposites were fabricated using liquid natural rubber latex as [...] Read more.
Stacked-cup carbon nanotubes (SCCNTs) are generally referred to as carbon nanofibers (CNFs). SCCNTs are much less expensive to fabricate and are regarded as good polymer modifiers suitable for large-scale production. Flexible, SCCNT-based soy lecithin biocomposites were fabricated using liquid natural rubber latex as binder. Natural polymers and the SCCNTs were dispersed in a green solvent using a benchtop high-pressure homogenizer. The inks were simply brush-on painted onto cellulose fiber networks and compacted by a hydraulic press so as to transform into conductive paper-like form. The resulting flexible SCCNT papers demonstrated excellent resistance against severe folding and bending tests, with volume resistivity of about 85 Ω·cm at 20 wt % SCCNT loading. The solvent enabled formation of hydrogen bonding between natural rubber and soy lecithin. Thermomechanical measurements indicated that the biocomposites have good stability below and above glass transition points. Moreover, the SCCNT biocomposites had high through-plane thermal conductivity of 5 W/mK and 2000 kJ/m3K volumetric heat capacity, ideal for thermal interface heat transfer applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Engineering Bionanocomposites for Functional Applications)
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Open AccessArticle
Sesbania Gum-Supported Hydrophilic Electrospun Fibers Containing Nanosilver with Superior Antibacterial Activity
Nanomaterials 2019, 9(4), 592; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano9040592 - 10 Apr 2019
Cited by 4
Abstract
In this contribution, we report for the first time on a new strategy for developing sesbania gum-supported hydrophilic fibers containing nanosilver using electrospinning (SG-Ag/PAN electrospun fibers), which gives the fibers superior antibacterial activity. Employing a series of advanced technologies—scanning electron microscopy, transmission electron [...] Read more.
In this contribution, we report for the first time on a new strategy for developing sesbania gum-supported hydrophilic fibers containing nanosilver using electrospinning (SG-Ag/PAN electrospun fibers), which gives the fibers superior antibacterial activity. Employing a series of advanced technologies—scanning electron microscopy, transmission electron microscopy, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, UV–visible absorption spectroscopy, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, and contact angle testing—we characterized the as-synthesized SG-Ag/PAN electrospun fibers in terms of morphology, size, surface state, chemical composition, and hydrophilicity. By adjusting the synthesis conditions, in particular the feed ratio of sesbania gum (SG) and polyacrylonitrile (PAN) to Ag nanoparticles (NPs), we regulated the morphology and size of the as-electrospun fibers. The fibers’ antibacterial properties were examined using the colony-counting method with two model bacteria: Escherichia coli (a Gram-negative bacterium) and Staphylococcus aureus (a Gram-positive bacterium). Interestingly, compared to Ag/PAN and SG-PAN electrospun fibers, the final SG-Ag/PAN showed enhanced antibacterial activity towards both of the model bacteria due to the combination of antibacterial Ag NPs and hydrophilic SG, which enabled the fibers to have sufficient contact with the bacteria. We believe this strategy has great potential for applications in antibacterial-related fields. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Engineering Bionanocomposites for Functional Applications)
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Open AccessArticle
One-Step Fabrication of Three-Dimensional Fibrous Collagen-Based Macrostructure with High Water Uptake Capability by Coaxial Electrospinning
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(10), 803; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8100803 - 08 Oct 2018
Cited by 2
Abstract
One step fabrication of the three dimension (3D) fibrous structure of Collagen-g-poly(MMA-co-EA)/Nylon6 was investigated by controlling the experimental conditions during coaxial electrospinning. This 3D fibrous structure is the result of interactions of two polymeric systems with a varied capability to be electrostatically polarized [...] Read more.
One step fabrication of the three dimension (3D) fibrous structure of Collagen-g-poly(MMA-co-EA)/Nylon6 was investigated by controlling the experimental conditions during coaxial electrospinning. This 3D fibrous structure is the result of interactions of two polymeric systems with a varied capability to be electrostatically polarized under the influence of the external electric field; the solution with the higher conductivity into the inner spinneret and the solution with the lesser conductivity into the outer capillary of the coaxial needle. This set-up was to obtain bimodal fiber fabrication in micro and nanoscale developing a spatial structure; the branches growing off a trunk. The resultant 3D collagen-based fibrous structure has two distinguished configurations: microfibers of 6.9 ± 2.2 µm diameter gap-filled with nanofibers of 216 ± 49 nm diameter. The 3D fibrous structure can be accumulated at an approximate height of 4 cm within 20 min. The mechanism of the 3D fibrous structure and the effect of experimental conditions, the associated hydration degree, water uptake and degradation rate were also investigated. This highly stable 3D fibrous structure has great potential end-uses benefitting from its large surface area and high water uptake which is caused by the high polarity and spatial orientation of collagen-based macrostructure. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Engineering Bionanocomposites for Functional Applications)
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Open AccessArticle
Efficient Encapsulation of Citral in Fast-Dissolving Polymer-Free Electrospun Nanofibers of Cyclodextrin Inclusion Complexes: High Thermal Stability, Longer Shelf-Life, and Enhanced Water Solubility of Citral
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(10), 793; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8100793 - 06 Oct 2018
Cited by 4
Abstract
Here, we report a facile production of citral/cyclodextrin (CD) inclusion complex (IC) nanofibers (NFs) from three types of CDs (hydroxypropyl-beta-cyclodextrin (HPβCD), hydroxypropyl-gamma-cyclodextrin (HPγCD), and methylated-beta-cyclodextrin (MβCD)) by an electrospinning technique without the need of any polymeric carrier matrix. Self-standing nanofibrous webs of citral/CD-IC [...] Read more.
Here, we report a facile production of citral/cyclodextrin (CD) inclusion complex (IC) nanofibers (NFs) from three types of CDs (hydroxypropyl-beta-cyclodextrin (HPβCD), hydroxypropyl-gamma-cyclodextrin (HPγCD), and methylated-beta-cyclodextrin (MβCD)) by an electrospinning technique without the need of any polymeric carrier matrix. Self-standing nanofibrous webs of citral/CD-IC nanofibers (citral/CD-IC-NF) with uniform fiber morphology have been successfully electrospun from aqueous solutions of citral/CD-IC. Thanks to the inclusion complex formed with CDs, the efficient preservation of citral (up to ~80%) in citral/CD-IC-NFs was observed. In addition, the citral/CD-IC-NFs have shown ~50% preservation of citral for 15 days at room temperature even though citral has a highly volatile nature. The enhanced thermal stability of citral (~100–300°C) in citral/CD-IC-NFs compared to pure citral (~50–165°C) has been observed. Moreover, citral/CD-IC-NFs tended to disintegrate in water very quickly. To summarize, citral was efficiently encapsulated in citral/CD-IC-NFs, and these citral/CD-IC-NFs have been shown to be fast dissolving. In citral/CD-IC-NFs, citral/CD-ICs have enhanced water solubility of citral along with high-temperature stability and a longer shelf-life. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Engineering Bionanocomposites for Functional Applications)
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Open AccessArticle
High-Throughput Preparation of Silk Fibroin Nanofibers by Modified Bubble-Electrospinning
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(7), 471; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8070471 - 27 Jun 2018
Cited by 16
Abstract
As a kind of natural macromolecular protein molecule extracted from silk, silk fibroin (SF) has been widely used as biological materials in recent years due to its good physical and chemical properties. In this paper, a modified bubble-electrospinning (MBE) using a cone-shaped gas [...] Read more.
As a kind of natural macromolecular protein molecule extracted from silk, silk fibroin (SF) has been widely used as biological materials in recent years due to its good physical and chemical properties. In this paper, a modified bubble-electrospinning (MBE) using a cone-shaped gas nozzle combined with a copper solution reservoir was applied to obtain high-throughput fabrication of SF nanofibers. In the MBE process, sodium dodecyl benzene sulfonates (SDBS) were used as the surfactant to improve the spinnability of SF solution. The rheological properties and conductivity of the electrospun SF solutions were investigated. And the effects of gas flow volume, SF solution concentration and additive amounts of SDBS on the morphology, property and production of SF nanofibers were studied. The results showed the decrease of gas flow volume could decrease the nanofiber diameter, enhance the diameter distribution, and increase the production of nanofibers. And the maximum yield could reach 3.10 g/h at the SF concentration of 10 wt % and the SDBS concentration of 0.1 wt %. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Engineering Bionanocomposites for Functional Applications)
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Review

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Open AccessReview
Synthetic Biodegradable Aliphatic Polyester Nanocomposites Reinforced with Nanohydroxyapatite and/or Graphene Oxide for Bone Tissue Engineering Applications
Nanomaterials 2019, 9(4), 590; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano9040590 - 10 Apr 2019
Cited by 10
Abstract
This paper provides review updates on the current development of bionanocomposites with polymeric matrices consisting of synthetic biodegradable aliphatic polyesters reinforced with nanohydroxyaptite (nHA) and/or graphene oxide (GO) nanofillers for bone tissue engineering applications. Biodegradable aliphatic polyesters include poly(lactic acid) (PLA), polycaprolactone (PCL) [...] Read more.
This paper provides review updates on the current development of bionanocomposites with polymeric matrices consisting of synthetic biodegradable aliphatic polyesters reinforced with nanohydroxyaptite (nHA) and/or graphene oxide (GO) nanofillers for bone tissue engineering applications. Biodegradable aliphatic polyesters include poly(lactic acid) (PLA), polycaprolactone (PCL) and copolymers of PLA-PGA (PLGA). Those bionanocomposites have been explored for making 3D porous scaffolds for the repair of bone defects since nHA and GO enhance their bioactivity and biocompatibility by promoting biomineralization, bone cell adhesion, proliferation and differentiation, thus facilitating new bone tissue formation upon implantation. The incorporation of nHA or GO into aliphatic polyester scaffolds also improves their mechanical strength greatly, especially hybrid GO/nHA nanofilllers. Those mechanically strong nanocomposite scaffolds can support and promote cell attachment for tissue growth. Porous scaffolds fabricated from conventional porogen leaching, and thermally induced phase separation have many drawbacks inducing the use of organic solvents, poor control of pore shape and pore interconnectivity, while electrospinning mats exhibit small pores that limit cell infiltration and tissue ingrowth. Recent advancement of 3D additive manufacturing allows the production of aliphatic polyester nanocomposite scaffolds with precisely controlled pore geometries and large pores for the cell attachment, growth, and differentiation in vitro, and the new bone formation in vivo. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Engineering Bionanocomposites for Functional Applications)
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