Preparation and characterization of polymer composite materials based on PLA/TiO2 for antibacterial packaging
Keywords: 
Polylactic acid (PLA)
TiO2 nanoparticles
Polymer nanocomposites
Antibacterial packaging
Issue Date: 
2018
ISSN: 
2073-4360
Note: 
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons: Atribution License (cc BY)
Citation: 
Gonzalez, E. A. S.; Olmos, D.; Lorente, M. A.; et al. "Preparation and characterization of polymer composite materials based on PLA/TiO2 for antibacterial packaging". Polymers. 10 (12), 2018, 1365
Abstract
Polymer composite materials based on polylactic acid (PLA) filled with titanium dioxide (TiO2) nanoparticles were prepared. The aim of this work was to investigate the antibacterial action of TiO2 against a strain of E. coli (DH5) to obtain information on their potential uses in food and agro-alimentary industry. PLA/TiO2 systems were prepared by a two-step process: Solvent casting followed by a hot-pressing step. Characterization was done as a function of particle size (21 nm and <100 nm) and particle content (0%, 1%, 5%, 10%, and 20%, wt %). Structural characterization carried out by X-ray diffraction (XRD) and Fourier Transformed Infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) did not reveal significant changes in polymer structure due to the presence of TiO2 nanoparticles. Thermal characterization indicated that thermal transitions, measured by differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), did not vary, irrespective of size or content, whereas thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) revealed a slight increase in the temperature of degradation with particle content. Bacterial growth and biofilm formation on the surface of the composites against DH5 Escherichia coli was studied. Results suggested that the presence of TiO2 nanoparticles decreases the amount of extracellular polymeric substance (EPS) and limits bacterial growth.

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