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Colloids Surf B Biointerfaces. 2008 Jun 15;64(1):104-10. doi: 10.1016/j.colsurfb.2008.01.010. Epub 2008 Jan 19.

Preparation and characterization of nanoparticles formed by chitosan-caseinate interactions.

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Riddet Institute, Massey University, Private Bag 11 222, Palmerston North, New Zealand.


Intermacromolecular complexation between chitosan and sodium caseinate in aqueous solutions was studied as a function of pH (3-6.5), using absorbance measurements (at 600 nm), dynamic light scattering (DLS), and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). The chitosan-caseinate complexes formed were stable and soluble in the pH range 4.8-6.0. In this pH range, the biopolymers had opposite charges. At higher concentrations of chitosan (0.15 wt%), the soluble complexes associated to form larger particles. DLS data showed that, between pH 4.8 and 6.0, the particles formed by the complexation of chitosan and caseinate had sizes between 250 and 350 nm and these nanoparticles were visualized using negative staining TEM. Above pH 6.0, the nanoparticles associated to form larger particles, causing phase separation. Addition of NaCl increased the particle size. The pH dependence of the zeta potential of the mixture solutions was appreciably different from that of the pure protein and pure chitosan solutions.

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