Advance in Functional Biological Polymer Membranes

A special issue of Polymers (ISSN 2073-4360). This special issue belongs to the section "Polymer Membranes and Films".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (5 November 2023) | Viewed by 12602

Special Issue Editor


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Guest Editor
Physics Department, Bauman Moscow State Technical University, 2nd Baumanskaya 5, 105005 Moscow, Russia
Interests: soft matter; nanobubbles; clusters of nanobubbles; polymer membranes; ionomers; non-linear optics; non-linear spectroscopy; proton conductivity

Special Issue Information

Dear colleagues,

Functional polymer membranes represent a highly interdisciplinary frontier interfacing physics, chemistry, life science, and engineering. The study of these membranes is currently attracting an increasing number of researchers from different fields of science. This Special Issue will be focused on the development of polymeric membranes with advanced or novel functions in the various membrane separation processes for liquid and gaseous mixtures (gas separation, reverse osmosis, pervaporation, nanofiltration, ultrafiltration, microfiltration) and in other important applications of membranes such as biomaterials, catalysis (including fuel cell systems) or lab-on-chip technologies. Important approaches toward this aim include novel processing technologies of polymers for membranes, the synthesis of novel polymers with well-defined structure as ‘designed’ membrane materials, advanced surface functionalizations of membranes, the use of templates for creating ‘tailored’ barrier or surface structures for membranes, and the preparation of composite membranes for the synergistic combination of different functions by different (mainly polymeric) materials. The main purpose of this Special Issue is to gather a series of important works by leading experts on the subject and to provide a balanced collection of theoretical and experimental studies on functional polymer membranes. Special attention will be paid to the structures and functions of advanced polymer membranes with respect to improved or novel performance, and the potential implications of those developments for the future of membrane technology. As mentioned, the study of polymeric membranes is still a dynamic field. This means that questions are still being raised and answered, though significant achievements have been made. There remain arguments that need to be clarified by further experimental and theoretical work. With the advancement of characterization, theory, and computation, the study of nanoparticles in liquid has been revitalized and has emerged as a dynamic field. It is highly anticipated that the field can be promoted by reasonable and positive arguments within the community. As pointed out by Nobel Prize Laureate in chemistry Roald Hoffmann, “Science depends on arguments”.

Prof. Dr. Nikolai Bunkin
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • functional polymer
  • polymer membrane
  • membrane technology
  • proton exchange membrane
  • Nafion

Published Papers (5 papers)

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Research

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16 pages, 4789 KiB  
Article
A Polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) and Nano-Al2O3 Based Composite Coating with a Bacteriostatic Effect against E. coli and Low Cytotoxicity
by Dmitriy E. Burmistrov, Dmitriy A. Serov, Aleksander V. Simakin, Ilya V. Baimler, Oleg V. Uvarov and Sergey V. Gudkov
Polymers 2022, 14(21), 4764; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym14214764 - 07 Nov 2022
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2265
Abstract
The problem of bacterial contamination through surfaces is important for the food industry. In this regard, there is a growing interest in new coatings based on nanoparticles that can provide a long-term antibacterial effect. Aluminum oxide nanoparticles are a good candidate for such [...] Read more.
The problem of bacterial contamination through surfaces is important for the food industry. In this regard, there is a growing interest in new coatings based on nanoparticles that can provide a long-term antibacterial effect. Aluminum oxide nanoparticles are a good candidate for such coatings due to their availability and good biocompatibility. In this study, a coating containing aluminum oxide nanoparticles was produced using polytetrafluoroethylene as a polymer matrix—a polymer that exhibits excellent mechanical and physicochemical properties and it is not toxic. The obtained coatings based on “liquid Teflon” containing various concentrations of nanoparticles (0.001–0.1 wt%) prevented the bacterial growth, and they did not exhibit a cytotoxicity on animal cells in vitro. Such coatings are designed not only to provide an antibacterial surface effect, but also to eliminate micro damages on surfaces that inevitably occur in the process of food production. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advance in Functional Biological Polymer Membranes)
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13 pages, 1284 KiB  
Article
Performance and Structure Evaluation of Gln-Lys Isopeptide Bond Crosslinked USYK-SPI Bioplastic Film Derived from Discarded Yak Hair
by Ruirui Wang
Polymers 2022, 14(12), 2471; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym14122471 - 17 Jun 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1997
Abstract
To reduce the waste from yak hair and introduce resource recycling into the yak-related industry, an eco-friendly yak keratin-based bioplastic film was developed. We employed yak keratin (USYK) from yak hair, soy protein isolate (SPI) from soybean meal as a film-forming agent, transglutaminase [...] Read more.
To reduce the waste from yak hair and introduce resource recycling into the yak-related industry, an eco-friendly yak keratin-based bioplastic film was developed. We employed yak keratin (USYK) from yak hair, soy protein isolate (SPI) from soybean meal as a film-forming agent, transglutaminase (EC 2.3.2.13, TGase) as a catalytic crosslinker, and glycerol as a plasticizer for USYK-SPI bioplastic film production. The structures of the USYK-SPI bioplastic film were characterized by scanning electron microscopy (SEM), differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), and X-Ray diffraction (XRD). The mechanical properties, the thermal behavior, light transmittance performance, and water vapor permeability (WVP) were measured. The results revealed that the added SPI possibly acted as a reinforcement. The formation of Gln-Lys isopeptide bonds and hydrophobic interactions led to a stable crosslinking structure of USYK-SPI bioplastic film. The thermal and the mechanical behaviors of the USYK-SPI bioplastic film were improved. The enhanced dispersion and formation of co-continuous protein matrices possibly produced denser networks that limited the diffusion of water vapor and volatile compounds in the USYK-SPI bioplastic films. Moreover, the introduction of SPI prompted the relocation of hydrophobic groups on USYK molecules, which gave the USYK-SPI bioplastic film stronger surface hydrophobicity. The SPI and USYK molecules possess aromatic amino residuals (tyrosine, phenylalanine, tryptophan), which can absorb ultraviolet radiation. Thus, the USYK-SPI bioplastic films were shown to have an excellent UV barrier. The synergy effect between USYK and SPI is not only able to improve rigidity and the application performance of keratin-based composite film but can also reduce the cost of the keratin-based composite film through the low-cost of the SPI alternative which partially replaces the high-cost of keratin. The data obtained from this research can provide basic information for further research and practical applications of USYK-SPI bioplastic films. There is an increasing demand for the novel USYK-SPI bioplastic film in exploit packaging material, biomedical materials, eco-friendly wearable electronics, and humidity sensors. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advance in Functional Biological Polymer Membranes)
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19 pages, 3398 KiB  
Article
Bio-Functionalized Ultra-Thin, Large-Area and Waterproof Silicone Membranes for Biomechanical Cellular Loading and Compliance Experiments
by Karya Uysal, Till Creutz, Ipek Seda Firat, Gerhard M. Artmann, Nicole Teusch and Aysegül Temiz Artmann
Polymers 2022, 14(11), 2213; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym14112213 - 30 May 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1664
Abstract
Biocompatibility, flexibility and durability make polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) membranes top candidates in biomedical applications. CellDrum technology uses large area, <10 µm thin membranes as mechanical stress sensors of thin cell layers. For this to be successful, the properties (thickness, temperature, dust, wrinkles, etc.) must [...] Read more.
Biocompatibility, flexibility and durability make polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) membranes top candidates in biomedical applications. CellDrum technology uses large area, <10 µm thin membranes as mechanical stress sensors of thin cell layers. For this to be successful, the properties (thickness, temperature, dust, wrinkles, etc.) must be precisely controlled. The following parameters of membrane fabrication by means of the Floating-on-Water (FoW) method were investigated: (1) PDMS volume, (2) ambient temperature, (3) membrane deflection and (4) membrane mechanical compliance. Significant differences were found between all PDMS volumes and thicknesses tested (p < 0.01). They also differed from the calculated values. At room temperatures between 22 and 26 °C, significant differences in average thickness values were found, as well as a continuous decrease in thicknesses within a 4 °C temperature elevation. No correlation was found between the membrane thickness groups (between 3–4 µm) in terms of deflection and compliance. We successfully present a fabrication method for thin bio-functionalized membranes in conjunction with a four-step quality management system. The results highlight the importance of tight regulation of production parameters through quality control. The use of membranes described here could also become the basis for material testing on thin, viscous layers such as polymers, dyes and adhesives, which goes far beyond biological applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advance in Functional Biological Polymer Membranes)
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18 pages, 20566 KiB  
Article
Bacteriostatic and Cytotoxic Properties of Composite Material Based on ZnO Nanoparticles in PLGA Obtained by Low Temperature Method
by Dmitriy E. Burmistrov, Alexander V. Simakin, Veronika V. Smirnova, Oleg V. Uvarov, Petr I. Ivashkin, Roman N. Kucherov, Vladimir E. Ivanov, Vadim I. Bruskov, Mihail A. Sevostyanov, Alexander S. Baikin, Valery A. Kozlov, Maksim B. Rebezov, Anastasia A. Semenova, Andrey B. Lisitsyn, Maria V. Vedunova and Sergey V. Gudkov
Polymers 2022, 14(1), 49; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym14010049 - 23 Dec 2021
Cited by 17 | Viewed by 3144
Abstract
A low-temperature technology was developed for producing a nanocomposite based on poly (lactic-co-glycolic acid) and zinc oxide nanoparticles (ZnO-NPs), synthesized by laser ablation. Nanocomposites were created containing 0.001, 0.01, and 0.1% of zinc oxide nanoparticles with rod-like morphology and a size of 40–70 [...] Read more.
A low-temperature technology was developed for producing a nanocomposite based on poly (lactic-co-glycolic acid) and zinc oxide nanoparticles (ZnO-NPs), synthesized by laser ablation. Nanocomposites were created containing 0.001, 0.01, and 0.1% of zinc oxide nanoparticles with rod-like morphology and a size of 40–70 nm. The surface of the films from the obtained nanomaterial was uniform, without significant defects. Clustering of ZnO-NPs in the PLGA matrix was noted, which increased with an increase in the concentration of the dopant in the polymer. The resulting nanomaterial was capable of generating reactive oxygen species (ROS), such as hydrogen peroxide and hydroxyl radicals. The rate of ROS generation increased with an increase in the concentration of the dopant. It was shown that the synthesized nanocomposite promotes the formation of long-lived reactive protein species, and is also the reason for the appearance of a key biomarker of oxidative stress, 8-oxoguanine, in DNA. The intensity of the process increased with an increase in the concentration of nanoparticles in the matrix. It was found that the nanocomposite exhibits significant bacteriostatic properties, the severity of which depends on the concentration of nanoparticles. In particular, on the surface of the PLGA–ZnO-NPs composite film containing 0.001% nanoparticles, the number of bacterial cells was 50% lower than that of pure PLGA. The surface of the composite is non-toxic to eukaryotic cells and does not interfere with their adhesion, growth, and division. Due to its low cytotoxicity and bacteriostatic properties, this nanocomposite can be used as coatings for packaging in the food industry, additives for textiles, and also as a material for biomedicine. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advance in Functional Biological Polymer Membranes)
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Review

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37 pages, 21436 KiB  
Review
Nafion: New and Old Insights into Structure and Function
by Barry W. Ninham, Matthew J. Battye, Polina N. Bolotskova, Rostislav Yu. Gerasimov, Valery A. Kozlov and Nikolai F. Bunkin
Polymers 2023, 15(9), 2214; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym15092214 - 07 May 2023
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2661
Abstract
The work reports a number of results on the dynamics of swelling and inferred nanostructure of the ion-exchange polymer membrane Nafion in different aqueous solutions. The techniques used were photoluminescent and Fourier transform IR (FTIR) spectroscopy. The centers of photoluminescence were identified as [...] Read more.
The work reports a number of results on the dynamics of swelling and inferred nanostructure of the ion-exchange polymer membrane Nafion in different aqueous solutions. The techniques used were photoluminescent and Fourier transform IR (FTIR) spectroscopy. The centers of photoluminescence were identified as the sulfonic groups localized at the ends of the perfluorovinyl ether (Teflon) groups that form the backbone of Nafion. Changes in deuterium content of water induced unexpected results revealed in the process of polymer swelling. In these experiments, deionized (DI) water (deuterium content 157 ppm) and deuterium depleted water (DDW) with deuterium content 3 PPM, were investigated. The strong hydration of sulfonic groups involves a competition between ortho- and para-magnetic forms of a water molecule. Deuterium, as it seems, adsorbs competitively on the sulfonic groups and thus can change the geometry of the sulfate bonds. With photoluminescent spectroscopy experiments, this is reflected in the unwinding of the polymer fibers into the bulk of the adjoining water on swelling. The unwound fibers do not tear off from the polymer substrate. They form a vastly extended “brush” type structure normal to the membrane surface. This may have implications for specificity of ion transport in biology, where the ubiquitous glycocalyx of cells and tissues invariably involves highly sulfated polymers such asheparan and chondroitin sulfate. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advance in Functional Biological Polymer Membranes)
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