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Novel All-Natural Microcapsules from Gelatin and Shellac for Biorelated Applications

Authors

  • Ashok R. Patel,

    Corresponding author
    1. Soft Condensed Matter Group, Debye Institute for NanoMaterials Science, Utrecht University, Princetonplein 5, 3584 CC Utrecht, The Netherlands
    Current affiliation:
    1. Vandemoortele Centre, Laboratory of Food Technology and Engineering, Faculty of Bioscience Engineering, University of Gent, Coupure Links 653, B-9000 Gent, Belgium
    • Soft Condensed Matter Group, Debye Institute for NanoMaterials Science, Utrecht University, Princetonplein 5, 3584 CC Utrecht, The Netherlands.
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  • Caroline Remijn,

    1. Unilever R&D Vlaardingen, Olivier van Noortlaan 120, 3134 AT Vlaardingen, The Netherlands
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  • Ana-isabel Mulet Cabero,

    1. Unilever R&D Vlaardingen, Olivier van Noortlaan 120, 3134 AT Vlaardingen, The Netherlands
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  • Patricia C.M. Heussen,

    1. Unilever R&D Vlaardingen, Olivier van Noortlaan 120, 3134 AT Vlaardingen, The Netherlands
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  • Jack W.M. Seijen ten Hoorn,

    1. Unilever R&D Vlaardingen, Olivier van Noortlaan 120, 3134 AT Vlaardingen, The Netherlands
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  • Krassimir P. Velikov

    Corresponding author
    1. Soft Condensed Matter Group, Debye Institute for NanoMaterials Science, Utrecht University, Princetonplein 5, 3584 CC Utrecht, The Netherlands
    2. Unilever R&D Vlaardingen, Olivier van Noortlaan 120, 3134 AT Vlaardingen, The Netherlands
    • Soft Condensed Matter Group, Debye Institute for NanoMaterials Science, Utrecht University, Princetonplein 5, 3584 CC Utrecht, The Netherlands.
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Abstract

The generation of novel all-natural biopolymeric microcapsules fabricated using natural biopolymers, protein (gelatin) and resin (shellac), is reported. These novel microcapsules are generated using a simple extrusion method wherein the gelatin-shellac mixture is dropped in an acidic medium resulting in an instantaneous solidification of aqueous drops into solid spherical microcapsules that retain their shape on air-drying. The formation of the microcapsules is basically due to the strong interactions between two oppositely charged polymers (as confirmed from isothermal titration calorimetry and infrared spectroscopy) and the instant precipitation of acid-resistant shellac. These novel microcapsules prepared without the help of any cross-linkers or harsh solvent are extensively characterized and several biorelated applications for pharmaceuticals (encapsulation and release of bioactive molecules), foods (loading of colorants and flavors), sensors (encapsulation of pH sensitive dye), and biotechnology (enzyme immobilization) fields are further demonstrated.

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