Advanced Natural Polymers: Synthesis, Characterization and Applications

A special issue of Polymers (ISSN 2073-4360). This special issue belongs to the section "Biomacromolecules, Biobased and Biodegradable Polymers".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 10 June 2024 | Viewed by 1295

Special Issue Editor


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Guest Editor
Department of Green Chemical Engineering, Sangmyung University, Jongno-gu, Republic of Korea
Interests: natural polymers; microfluidics; biodegradable; swelling; drug delivery; multi-function
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Advanced natural polymers are widely applied in various engineering fields, including drug delivery, food, and functional materials, which present high biodegradability, good biocompatibility, and external stimuli reacted physiological activity. Therefore, it is of great practical significance and application value to clearly analyze the chemical structure of polymer composites and accurately reveal the structure–activity relationship for the design and development of more functional materials and smart drugs that can be used in various engineering applications, such as biological and environmental fields.

The aim of this Special Issue is to gather the latest original research studies that involve natural polymer materials. We look forward to receiving your manuscripts in this field. Research articles and review articles are both welcome.

Dr. Sung-Min Kang
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Polymers is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2700 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • natural polymer
  • engineering
  • synthesis
  • functional materials
  • biocompatible

Published Papers (2 papers)

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Research

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12 pages, 2845 KiB  
Article
Evaporation-Driven Energy Generation Using an Electrospun Polyacrylonitrile Nanofiber Mat with Different Support Substrates
by Yongbum Kwon, Dai Bui-Vinh, Seung-Hwan Lee, So Hyun Baek, Songhui Lee, Jeungjai Yun, Minwoo Baek, Hyun-Woo Lee, Jaebeom Park, Miri Kim, Minsang Yoo, Bum Sung Kim, Yoseb Song, Handol Lee, Do-Hyun Lee and Da-Woon Jeong
Polymers 2024, 16(9), 1180; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym16091180 - 23 Apr 2024
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Abstract
Water evaporation-driven energy harvesting is an emerging mechanism for contributing to green energy production with low cost. Herein, we developed polyacrylonitrile (PAN) nanofiber-based evaporation-driven electricity generators (PEEGs) to confirm the feasibility of utilizing electrospun PAN nanofiber mats in an evaporation-driven energy harvesting system. [...] Read more.
Water evaporation-driven energy harvesting is an emerging mechanism for contributing to green energy production with low cost. Herein, we developed polyacrylonitrile (PAN) nanofiber-based evaporation-driven electricity generators (PEEGs) to confirm the feasibility of utilizing electrospun PAN nanofiber mats in an evaporation-driven energy harvesting system. However, PAN nanofiber mats require a support substrate to enhance its durability and stability when it is applied to an evaporation-driven energy generator, which could have additional effects on generation performance. Accordingly, various support substrates, including fiberglass, copper, stainless mesh, and fabric screen, were applied to PEEGs and examined to understand their potential impacts on electrical generation outputs. As a result, the PAN nanofiber mats were successfully converted to a hydrophilic material for an evaporation-driven generator by dip-coating them in nanocarbon black (NCB) solution. Furthermore, specific electrokinetic performance trends were investigated and the peak electricity outputs of Voc were recorded to be 150.8, 6.5, 2.4, and 215.9 mV, and Isc outputs were recorded to be 143.8, 60.5, 103.8, and 121.4 μA, from PEEGs with fiberglass, copper, stainless mesh, and fabric screen substrates, respectively. Therefore, the implications of this study would provide further perspectives on the developing evaporation-induced electricity devices based on nanofiber materials. Full article
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Review

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16 pages, 1999 KiB  
Review
Reviving Natural Rubber Synthesis via Native/Large Nanodiscs
by Abdul Wakeel Umar, Naveed Ahmad and Ming Xu
Polymers 2024, 16(11), 1468; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym16111468 - 22 May 2024
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Abstract
Natural rubber (NR) is utilized in more than 40,000 products, and the demand for NR is projected to reach $68.5 billion by 2026. The primary commercial source of NR is the latex of Hevea brasiliensis. NR is produced by the sequential cis-condensation [...] Read more.
Natural rubber (NR) is utilized in more than 40,000 products, and the demand for NR is projected to reach $68.5 billion by 2026. The primary commercial source of NR is the latex of Hevea brasiliensis. NR is produced by the sequential cis-condensation of isopentenyl diphosphate (IPP) through a complex known as the rubber transferase (RTase) complex. This complex is associated with rubber particles, specialized organelles for NR synthesis. Despite numerous attempts to isolate, characterize, and study the RTase complex, definitive results have not yet been achieved. This review proposes an innovative approach to overcome this longstanding challenge. The suggested method involves isolating the RTase complex without using detergents, instead utilizing the native membrane lipids, referred to as “natural nanodiscs”, and subsequently reconstituting the complex on liposomes. Additionally, we recommend the adaptation of large nanodiscs for the incorporation and reconstitution of the RTase complex, whether it is in vitro transcribed or present within the natural nanodiscs. These techniques show promise as a viable solution to the current obstacles. Based on our experimental experience and insights from published literature, we believe these refined methodologies can significantly enhance our understanding of the RTase complex and its role in in vitro NR synthesis. Full article
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