Tailoring of alginate gel properties with mannuronan C-5 epimerases: Correlations between structural and physical properties
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Alginates unique ability to form gels with divalent ions is one of the major properties for its use in food, pharmaceutics and medicine. The physical properties of ionic crosslinked alginate gels are highly connected to the composition of the alginate. By using unique mannuronan C-5 epimerases, the alginate structure can be tailored to a high extent. Previous work has shown that alginates with G-blocks interspaced with MG-blocks give Ca- gels that are compact (have high syneresis) and very stable against osmotic swelling (Strand et al. 2003, Mørch et al. 2007 and 2008). Recent work on alginates enzymatically tailored to give G-blocks and M-blocks shows that these gels are very susceptible to osmotic swelling. This project aims at exploring the physical properties of enzymatic tailored alginates and make a direct comparison of alginates containing G-blocks interspaced with M-blocks or MG-blocks.