Authors: ANAMARIA IRIMIA, EMILIA CSISZAR, MARIUS DOBROMIR, FLORICA DOROFTEI, CORNELIA VASILE
Abstract: Coating processes are applied in order to improve coating adhesion and resistance to degradation. Covalently bound organic coatings rather than merely physically bound ones assure stable modification. In this study a novel two-step process was developed to modify cellulose/chitin mix fibers consisting of enzymatic activation with a commercial cellulase, followed by a coupling reaction with N-isopropylacrylamide (or poly (N-isopropylacrylamide)) in the presence of 1-(3-dimethylaminopropyl)-3-ethylcarbodiimide (EDC) and N-hydroxysuccinimide (NHS). Both enzyme-activated and subsequently modified samples were characterized by ATR-FTIR, XPS, and SEM. All obtained results confirm the structural and morphological changes of the fiber surface after the application of the two-step procedure. The particular responsiveness to temperature and to pH of the coated fibers was evidenced by following the swelling behavior. It was established that the swelling kinetics followed a Fickian behavior.
Keywords: Fibers, responsive, cellulose, chitin, enzymes
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