There is an ongoing rise in global plastic waste because of the mass production and vast consumption of surgical face masks during the COVID-19 outbreak. This problem leads to a crucial need for alternative face coverings which can eliminate environmental concerns. Using cloth masks can be a sustainable solution if combined with a functional filtering layer. In this study, electrospun nanofibrous mats (NM) were generated using a renewable biopolymer; pullulan by the incorporation of cyclodextrin inclusion complexes (γCD-IC) of naturally occurring essential oil compound; trans-cinnamaldehyde (CAH). Pullulan/CAH-γCD-IC NM was readily inserted into a cloth mask due to its free-standing and foldable features and achieved higher loading efficiency (∼62%) than pullulan/CAH NM (∼10%). Here, pullulan/CAH-γCD-IC NM showed substantial and better antibacterial activity, long-term storage stability, and thermal stability due to inclusion complexation. Pullulan/CAH-γCD-IC NM was also obtained with promising properties of pore size (∼390 nm) and water vapor permeability (∼890 g/m2/day). The water solubility of pullulan/CAH-γCD-IC NM ensured fast and easy disposal without potential environmental loading, thanks to the biocompatibility of components. Briefly, pullulan/CAH-γCD-IC NM can create an attractive alternative as a functional layer that can be combined with the cloth mask.
Asli Celebioglu, Christopher W. Lawson, Emmy Zhiren Hsiung, Rimi Chowdhury, Craig Altier, and Tamer Uyar*(2023) Antibacterial Nanofibrous Mat of Pullulan/Cinnamaldehyde-Cyclodextrin Inclusion Complexes as a Potential Cloth Mask Layer with Long-Term Storage Stability and Facile Disposal Property.
ACS Sustainable Chem. Eng.
Publication Date:July 18, 2023