Films from xylan/chitosan complexes: Preparation and characterization

Carla N. Schnell, María V. Galván, Maria Soledad Peresin, Maria C. Inalbon, Jari Vartiainen, Miguel A. Zanuttini, Paulina Mocchiutti (Corresponding Author)

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

    37 Citations (Scopus)


    Films from colloidal suspensions of cationic polyelectrolyte complexes of xylan (Xyl) and chitosan (Ch) were formed and characterized by measuring: oxygen and water vapor barrier properties, solubility, and mechanical properties. High xylan content (Xyl/Ch mass ratio: from 70/30 to 85/15) was used, and a low amount of plasticizer (10 wt% glycerol) was always added. At 50% relative humidity (RH), all films had promising oxygen barrier properties (<0.3 μm cm 3/day m 2 kPa) and good mechanical properties for applications such as food packaging (stress at break of 10 MPa and strain at break of 12.2% for 70/30 Xyl/Ch film). All films showed a moderate water vapor transmission rate: 19.6–21.3 g/(h m 2). Although solubility was relatively high (26.5–35.4%), the integrity of the films was maintained after immersion in pH 5.0 buffer solution for 24 h. The 70/30 film was the most transparent, uniform, and deformable of the formulations evaluated, showing low crystallinity according to X-ray diffraction results. Dynamic mechanical analysis revealed a high correlation between its viscoelastic behavior and changes in RH (from 0 to 80% RH). Studies conducted using an agar disc diffusion protocol showed antimicrobial activity against Escherichia coli and Staphylococcus aureus bacteria only in the contact area under the film discs.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)4393-4403
    Issue number10
    Early online date29 Jul 2017
    Publication statusPublished - 2017
    MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


    • Natural polyelectrolyte complexes
    • Barrier properties
    • Relative humidity effect
    • Antimicrobial effect
    • Mechanical properties


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