New intercalation complexes of chitin and selected organic compounds
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New intercalation complexes of chitin and selected organic compounds

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    Discovery of the compatibility of dimethylsulfoxi​de (DMSO) with beta-chitin from squid, together with indication of intercalation complexes of chitosan with carboxylic acids, alpha-chitin with alcohols and carbonyl compounds, and the softening action of N-​acetylethanolam​ine (NAEA) on dispersed chitin, prompted a renewed investigation of the incorporation of DMSO, NAEA and other organic solvent-​plasticizers into chitin isolates. Intercalation occurs by insertion of a small, usually planar guest molecule into the interstices of a lamellar host, such as chitin, which has open core spacings from its helical structure as well. Recognition of the propensity for chitin to participate as host in intercalation with a number of organic modifiers offers a new dimension in chitin chemistry and applications. Novel applications for chitin in films and filaments, dispersions, slow release drugs and other biomedical uses should be promoted with this new technology.
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