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Electrospinning of food-grade nanofibres from whey protein

Zhong, J., Mohan, S. D., Bell, A., Terry, A., Mitchell, G. and Davis, F. J. (2018) Electrospinning of food-grade nanofibres from whey protein. International Journal of Biological Macromolecules, 113. pp. 764-773. ISSN 0141-8130

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1016/j.ijbiomac.2018.02.113

Abstract/Summary

In this study, electrospinning has been employed to produce micro to nano scale fibres of whey protein in order to investigate their potential for use in the food industry. Initially, spinning of purewhey protein proved challenging; so in order to facilitate the spinning of freshly prepared aqueous solutions, small amounts of polyethylene oxide (as low as 1% w/w in solution) were incorporated in the spinning solutions. The electrospun composite polyethylene-oxide/whey fibres exhibited diameters in the region of 100 to 400 nm, showing the potential to build fibre bundles from this size up. Time-dependent examinations of pure whey protein aqueous solutions were conducted using rheometery and small angle neutron scattering techniques, with the results showing a substantial change in the solution properties with time and stirring; and allowing the production of fibres, albeit with large diameters,without the need for an additive. The spinability is related to the potential of thewhey protein composites to form aggregate structures, either through hydration and interaction with neighbouring proteins, or through interaction with the polyethylene oxide.

Item Type:Article
Refereed:Yes
Divisions:Faculty of Life Sciences > School of Chemistry, Food and Pharmacy > Department of Chemistry
Interdisciplinary centres and themes > Chemical Analysis Facility (CAF) > Electron Microscopy Laboratory (CAF)
ID Code:76402
Publisher:Elsevier

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