Improved Mechanical Properties of Poly(butylene succinate) Membrane by Co-electrospinning with Gelatin
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Gelatin, a natural proteinous polymer, was used to co-electrospin with poly(butylene succinate) (PBS) in order to improve the mechanical properties of PBS membrane and facilitate its applications in biomedical field. The PBS/gelatin blend membranes have narrower distribution of fiber diameter and smoother surface than neat PBS membrane. The contact angles, water absorption rates and water uptakes of the PBS/gelatin blend membranes were measured, showing increased hydrophilicity. The interaction between PBS and gelatin was investigated by attenuated total reflectance Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (ATR-FTIR) and differential scanning calorimetry (DSC). The mechanical properties of PBS/gelatin blend membranes in both dry and wet states were evaluated by uniaxial tensile tests. In the dry state, the PBS/gelatin blend membrane containing 10% gelatin has a 3-times increase in tensile strength without any adverse effect on ductility because of the existence of interaction between the two blend components, little change in crystallinity of PBS, and possible interaction between any adjacent fibers; the tensile strength and elongation at break are even better in the wet state attributed to some gelatin on fiber surfaces, which act as a binder in the presence of water. The potential applications of PBS/gelatin blend membranes were demonstrated by successful immobilization of thrombin, a clinically-used hemostatic drug. The thrombin-loaded membrane could be used for rapid hemostasis.
KeywordsPBS Gelatin Electrospinning Mechanical properties Blending
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We thank Technical Institute of Physics and Chemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences, for kindly providing the PBS. This work was financially supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 51173093) and Clinical Innovation Program of Chinese PLA General Hospital (No. 2012FC-ZHCG- 4001).
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