Thermoplastic starch plasticized with alginate-glycerol mixtures: Melt-processing evaluation and film properties.

Carbohydrate polymers

PubMedID: 25933526

López OV, Ninago MD, Lencina MM, García MA, Andreucetti NA, Ciolino AE, Villar MA. Thermoplastic starch plasticized with alginate-glycerol mixtures: Melt-processing evaluation and film properties. Carbohydr Polym. 2015;12683-90.
Corn starch melt-processing in the presence of a commonly used plasticizer mixture (water/glycerol) and a non-conventional alternative (alginate/glycerol) was evaluated. All assayed formulations were successfully processed by melt-mixing and injected in circular probes. It was determined that all samples presented a typical viscoelastic behavior, observing a decrease in storage and loss modulus with water and alginate concentration, which facilitated samples processability. Concerning to thermal stability, it was not affected neither for water nor alginate presence. From injected probes, flexible films were obtained by thermo-compression. Films with the highest assayed water content presented a sticky appearance, whereas those containing alginate were non-tacky. Plasticizing action of water and alginate was evidenced by the occurrence of homogeneous fracture surfaces, without the presence of unmelted starch granules. Besides, the shift of glass transition temperature to lower values also corroborated the plasticizing effect of both additives. In conclusion, obtained results demonstrated the well-plasticizing action of sodium alginate on starch matrix, turning this additive into a promissory alternative to replace water during melt-processing of thermoplastic corn-starch.