Water-Wettable Polypropylene Fibers by Facile Surface Treatment Based on Soy Proteins

Carlos Salas, Jan Genzer, Lucian A. Lucia, Martin A. Hubbe, Orlando J. Rojas*

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

    30 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Modification of the wetting behavior of hydrophobic surfaces is essential in a variety of materials, including textiles and membranes that require control of fluid interactions, adhesion, transport processes, sensing, etc. This investigation examines the enhancement of wettability of an important class of textile materials, viz., polypropylene (PP) fibers, by surface adsorption of different proteins from soybeans, including soy flour, isolate,glycinin, and beta-conglycinin. Detailed investigations of soy adsorption from aqueous solution (pH 7.4, 25 degrees C) on polypropylene thin films is carried out using quartz crystal microbalance (QCM) and surface plasmon resonance (SPR). A significant amount of protein adsorbs onto the PP surfaces primarily due to hydrophobic interactions. We establish that adsorption of a cationic surfactant, dioctadecyldimethylammonium bromide (DODA) onto PP surfaces prior to the protein deposition dramatically enhances its adsorption. The adsorption of proteins from native (PBS buffer, pH 7.4, 25 degrees C) and denatured conditions (PBS buffer, pH 7.4, 95 degrees C) onto DODA-treated PP leads to a high coverage of the proteins on the PP surface as confirmed by a significant improvement in water wettability. A shift in the contact angle from 128 degrees to completely wettable surfaces (approximate to 0 degrees) is observed and confirmed by imaging experiments conducted with fluorescence tags. Furthermore, the results from wicking tests indicate that hydrophobic PP nonwovens absorb a significant amount of water after protein treatment, i.e., the PP-modified surfaces become completely hydrophilic.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)6541-6548
    Number of pages8
    JournalACS Applied Materials and Interfaces
    Volume5
    Issue number14
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 24 Jul 2013
    MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

    Keywords

    • soy proteins
    • surface modification
    • polypropylene nonwovens
    • protein adsorption
    • wettability
    • wicking
    • TRANSFER RADICAL POLYMERIZATION
    • QUARTZ-CRYSTAL MICROBALANCE
    • VISCOELASTIC PROPERTIES
    • FUNCTIONAL-PROPERTIES
    • HYDROPHOBIC SURFACES
    • PLASMON RESONANCE
    • SOLID-SURFACES
    • ADSORPTION
    • FILMS
    • GLYCININ

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