Title: Chitin Nanostructure Engineering with Multiscale Properties for Biomedical and Environmental Applications
Authors: Suyoung Lee,Lam Tan Hao,Jeyoung Park,Dongyeop X. Oh,Dong Soo Hwang
Abstract: Nanochitin and nanochitosan (with random-copolymer-based multiscale architectures of glucosamine and N-acetylglucosamine units) have recently attracted immense attention for the development of green, sustainable, and advanced functional materials. Nanochitin and nanochitosan are multiscale materials from small oligomers, rod-shaped nanocrystals, longer nanofibers, to hierarchical assemblies of nanofibers. Various physical properties of chitin and chitosan depend on their molecular- and nanostructures; translational research has utilized them for a wide range of applications (biomedical, industrial, environmental, and so on). Instead of reviewing the entire extensive literature on chitin and chitosan, here, recent developments in multiscale-dependent material properties and their applications are highlighted; immune, medical, reinforcing, adhesive, green electrochemical materials, biological scaffolds, and sustainable food packaging are discussed considering the size, shape, and assembly of chitin nanostructures. In summary, new perspectives for the development of sustainable advanced functional materials based on nanochitin and nanochitosan by understanding and engineering their multiscale properties are described.