Effect of sodium poly(styrene sulfonate) on thermoreversible gelation of gelatin

J. R. Gillmor, R. W. Connelly, R. H. Colby, J. S. Tan

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The effect of an added polyanion, sodium poly(styrene sulfonate) (NaPSS), on the thermoreversible gelation and remelting of gelatin gels has been investigated by polarimetry and rheology. The presence of NaPSS can either enhance or reduce collagenlike helix formation, depending on the polymer concentration relative to that of gelatin and the gelation temperature. At temperatures < 20°C, the helical content is reduced by increasing the amount of added NaPSS, demonstrating the disruption of helical structure of gelatin by the polyanion. Synchronous measurements of optical rotation and modulus at 25°C, in both gelation and remelting, indicate that the optical rotation at the gel point for the pure gelatin is lowered on addition of NaPSS. At low frequency, the storage modulus of gelatin is increased by the addition of a small amount of NaPSS relative to that of gelatin, but decreased with excess NaPSS. The mechanical properties of gelatin with and without NaPSS will be discussed in light of the competition between network junction formation by strands of triple helices among gelatin chains and temporary ionic crosslinking between gelatin and the polyanion.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2287-2295
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Polymer Science, Part B: Polymer Physics
Issue number16
StatePublished - Aug 15 1999

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Polymers and Plastics
  • Materials Chemistry


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