Chitosan is a cationic polymer with different biomedical, biotechnological, environmental, industrial and agricultural applications. Various methods were suggested to prepare chitosan from its natural ancestor polymer, chitin, but the controlling of the molecular weight and degree of deacetylation of the resulting polymer was a problem where there is an inverse relationship between them. This study aimed at modifying the sequence of deacetylation process in combination with number of cooling/heating cycles for chitin to produce chitosans with high molecular weight as well as enhanced deacetylation. The produced chitosans were tested for their molecular weights, chemical structure, deacetylation degrees, antioxidant properties and purity. With the proposed modification of polymer deacetylation, different chitosans of different degrees of deacetylation but similar molecular weights were prepared. This may represent a more economical method for the production as well as applications of different types of chitosan.
Amir M Alsharabasy
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