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Biocompatibility enhancement of PLA by the generation of bionanocomposites with fish collagen derivatives

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Nanocomposites comprising bio-based polymers have become relevant in fields such as food packaging and biomedical applications. Polylactide (PLA) is a chiral and aliphatic polyester that can attain a wide range of tacticities which enables to tailor of the final material properties. However, PLA exhibits hydrophobic characteristics requiring the enhancement of its bioactivity by the generation of composites with hydrophilic materials as an approach to generate multifunctional material. Collagen is a natural and hydrophilic biopolymer that is partially hydrolyzed to obtain a material exhibiting higher solubility in aqueous solutions, namely gelatin, thus improving collagen usability. Herein, a series of free-standing films comprising different concentrations of commercial PLA and gelatin obtained from waste fisheries were produced to afford biocompatible coatings with promising biomedical applications. The multiscale structural characterization performed from the molecular scale (FTIR) to the nano-scale (SAXS/WAXS) level has been correlated with the thermal behaviour (DSC) and degradation (TGA) of the bionanocomposites generated to understand the processing conditions on the final material.

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The authors thank CACTI (University of Vigo) for technical assistance, Luis Lugo for providing access to the differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) equipment, and the ALBA synchrotron radiation facility for the beamtime conceded at BL11.


The authors acknowledge the financial support received from Project KET4F-Gas-SOE2/P1/P0823, which is co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund within the framework of Interreg Sudoe Programme and project PID2019-105827RB-I00–Agencia Estatal de Investigación, Spain.

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Correspondence to C. Hermida-Merino or D. Hermida-Merino.

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Moya-Lopez, C., Valcarcel, J., Vázquez, J.A. et al. Biocompatibility enhancement of PLA by the generation of bionanocomposites with fish collagen derivatives. emergent mater. 5, 695–702 (2022).

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