Novel composites were synthesized from keratin (KER), cellulose (CEL) and chitosan (CS). The method is recyclable because majority (>88%) of [BMIm+Cl-], an ionic liquid (IL), used as the sole solvent, was recovered for reuse. Experimentally, it was confirmed that unique properties of each component remain intact in the composites, namely bactericide (from KER and CS) and anti-inflammatory property (from KER). Specifically, the composites were examined for their anti-inflammatory influence on macrophages. The cells were imaged and immunophenotyped to determine the quantity using the macrophage marker CD11b. The 75:25 [KER+CS] composite was found to have the least amount of CD11b macrophages compared to other composites. Bactericidal assays indicated that all composites, except the 25:75 [KER+CS], substantially reduce the growth of organisms such as vancomycin resistant Enterococcus (VRE) and Eschericia coli. The results clearly indicate that the composites possess all properties needed for effective use as a wound dressing
Rosewald, Meghann; Hou, Fang Yao Stephen; Mututuvari, Tamutsiwa Moven; Harkins, April L.; and Tran, Chieu D., "Cellulose-Chitosan-Keratin Composite Materials: Synthesis, Immunological and Antibacterial Properties" (2014). Chemistry Faculty Research and Publications. 354.