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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Study of biodegradation behavior of chitosan-xanthan microspheres in simulated physiological media.

Microspheres of a polyelectrolyte complex hydrogel were prepared from chitosan and xanthan after interaction between the two polyionic polymers. Their biodegradation was studied vs. chitosan. Simulated gastric fluid (SGF, pH 1.2) and intestinal fluid (SIF, pH 7.5) both as biodegradation media and phosphate buffered saline (PBS, pH 7.4) as a negative control were used. The degradation studies were performed at 37 degrees C at 240 rpm permanent stirring to mimic the physiologic conditions. High performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) was carried out to quantify the chitosan degradation products using glucosamine (GA) and N-acetyl-D-glucosamine (N-Ac-GA) as references. The peaks area integration method was used to determine the amount of each degradation product as a function of incubation time in the media. The effect of the media on the morphological structure of microspheres was assessed by scanning electron microscopy. From HPLC studies, it appeared that in SGF and SIF the major degradation products were glucosamine (GA) and N-acetyl-D-glucosamine (NAc-GA). In the first 15 days, oligochitosan fractions were released from the complex, whereas N-acetyl-D-glucosamine was detected in the media after this period. The degradation kinetics were assessed by the measurement of the cumulative degradation products, which showed faster degradation of chitosan than the complex in SGF and SIF. SEM micrographs showed an enhancement of microsphere porosity as a function of incubation time in the simulated physiological media. Our results suggest a better control of the degradation kinetics when chitosan is complexed to xanthan.[1]


  1. Study of biodegradation behavior of chitosan-xanthan microspheres in simulated physiological media. Chellat, F., Tabrizian, M., Dumitriu, S., Chornet, E., Rivard, C.H., Yahia, L. J. Biomed. Mater. Res. (2000) [Pubmed]
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