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Production and characterization of chitosan hydrogels crosslinked with glutaraldehyde and zinc nitrate and reinforced with CNC

Grant number: 15/21821-8
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): November 01, 2016
Effective date (End): October 31, 2017
Field of knowledge:Engineering - Materials and Metallurgical Engineering
Principal Investigator:Ana Paula Lemes
Grantee:Sheila de Oliveira
Host Institution: Instituto de Ciência e Tecnologia (ICT). Universidade Federal de São Paulo (UNIFESP). Campus São José dos Campos. São José dos Campos , SP, Brazil


Chitosan is a sustainable, cheap, abundant and biocompatible polymer which can be used in agriculture, food and cosmetics industry, and especially in the medical field as a biomaterial. Hydrogels and membranes of chitosan have been widely studied for applications in controlled liberation system, production of dressings and matrices for cell growth in tissue engineering. The main limitation on the use of chitosan reported in the literature is its low mechanical property. For this reason, many nanoparticles have been added as reinforcement in chitosan matrix. Many works have studied the production and characterization of chitosan and cellulose nanocrystals (CNC) composite, both are biocompatible and nontoxic natural polymers, therefore they are very interesting to the medical field. However, most of these studies evaluate the effect of the addition of CNC in chitosan films, few studies evaluate the effect of this nanoparticle in hydrogels. Therefore, the objective of this project is to produce and characterize chitosan hydrogels crosslinked with glutaraldehyde and zinc nitrate and reinforced with CNC. Zinc nitrate will be used in order to reduce the production time of the hydrogel, and minimize the amount of glutaraldehyde in crosslinking of the hydrogel, making the material even more viable for application in the medical field. Hydrogels of chitosan with different concentrations of CNC will be produced, and the hydrogels will be characterized by scanning electron microscopy, uniaxial compression test, swelling ratio, determination of the crosslinking degree and in vitro degradation test. (AU)

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