, Volume 3, Issue 1, pp 36-44

Characterization and Quantification of Chitosan Extracted from Nacre of the Abalone Haliotis tuberculata and the Oyster Pinctada maxima

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This study was performed to characterize and quantify chitosan by simple physicochemical methods (infrared spectroscopy and potentiometric measurements). These procedures were validated with well-characterized chitosan before being used to investigate chitosan in nacre of the abalone Haliotis tuberculata and of the giant oyster Pinctada maxima. Potentiometric study revealed a chitosan extract from the nacre of H. tuberculata with a degree of deacetylation of around 88% and an intrinsic pK of 6.5. According to infrared and potentiometric data, a low yield (η) of extraction was calculated (η= 0.064%). For experiments performed on the nacre of P. maxima, and in spite of more stringent deacetylation conditions, results suggested that a chitin-protein complex (η= 0.053%) was isolated rather than chitosan.

Received February 16, 2000; accepted July 4, 2000.