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Study of kombucha bacterial cellulose membrane (bio)degradation

Grant number: 22/08341-0
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): August 01, 2022
Effective date (End): July 31, 2023
Field of knowledge:Engineering - Materials and Metallurgical Engineering - Nonmetallic Materials
Principal Investigator:Maira de Lourdes Rezende
Grantee:Renata Leme
Host Institution: Faculdade de Tecnologia de Sorocaba (FATEC Sorocaba). Centro Paula Souza (CEETEPS). Secretaria de Desenvolvimento Econômico (São Paulo - Estado). Sorocaba , SP, Brazil


Bacterial cellulose (BC) is a natural and environmentally friendly biopolymer with excellent biological affinity, high mechanical strength, elasticity, absorption capacity, and crystallinity, characteristics that confer potential applicability in biomedicine, textile, food, paper, etc. Membranes of bacterial cellulose kombucha (MCBK) stand out among the biopolymers and are produced by aerobic bacteria from kombucha, a fermented beverage rich in sugars. Physicochemical characterizations, evaluation of microbiological activity, and absorption of MCBK are reported in the literature, but its biodegradability is not explored. It is necessary to understand the mechanisms of (bio)degradation of the MCBK, whose results will contribute to its different applications and to the development of eco-efficient products related to emerging demands such as the circular economy. The objectives of this project are to obtain MCBK and study its (bio)degradability, both in the presence of enzymes and in media that simulate degradation in soil and in the human body. The MCBK will be characterized through FTIR, DSC, TG, SEM, and mechanical tests. Agings will be carried out in vitro (in the presence of the cellulase enzyme and in phosphate buffer) and in simulated soil, aiming to understand in detail the degradation mechanisms of this polymer in different media and, consequently, contribute significantly to the literature, disseminating data so far not available, studied or little known. (AU)

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