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ARS Home » Midwest Area » Peoria, Illinois » National Center for Agricultural Utilization Research » Plant Polymer Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #370951

Research Project: Conversion of Polysaccharides and Other Bio-based Materials to High-Value, Commercial Products

Location: Plant Polymer Research

Title: Hydrophobic modification of cashew gum with alkenyl succinic anhydride

item Biswas, Atanu
item Cheng, Huai
item Kim, Sanghoon
item ALVES, CARLUCIO - State University Of Ceará

Submitted to: Polymers
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 2/24/2020
Publication Date: 2/27/2020
Citation: Biswas, A., Cheng, H.N., Kim, S., Alves, C.R., Furtado, R.F. 2020. Hydrophobic modification of cashew gum with alkenyl succinic anhydride. Polymers. 12(3):514.

Interpretive Summary: In view of the increasing awareness of the hazards of non-degradable polymers and microplastics, there has been much interest in developing agro-based and biodegradable agro-based polymers for industrial applications. However, these polymers may not have the optimal properties for many applications, and it would be desirable to modify these polymers chemically in order to broaden their applicability and increase their value. Cashew gum is a good example of such a polymer. It is an exudate of the cashew tree, which is grown in many tropical and subtropical countries. We have produced new hydrophobically modified polymers from cashew gum and characterized them with a number of analytical techniques. These new polymers should be good additions to the family of hydrophobically modified polysaccharides, which have been used as thickeners, emulsifiers, and compatibilizers in commercial product formulations.

Technical Abstract: Cashew gum (CG) shows promise of being useful as an agro-based raw material for the production of eco-friendly and biodegradable polymers. In this work, we modified this water-soluble polymer with alkenyl succinic anhydride in order to attach a hydrophobic group to it. The modification used two reagents: octenyl succinic anhydride and tetrapropenyl succinic anhydride. Reactions were conducted at 120 °C using dimethyl sulfoxide as a solvent, with conversions better than 88%. Samples with degrees of substitution (DS) between 0.02 and 0.20 were made. The resulting polymers were characterized using 1H NMR, 13C NMR, FTIR, TGA, and GPC. The addition of the hydrophobe decreased the affinity of cashew gum for water absorption. Hydrophobically modified polysaccharides are often used as polymeric emulsifiers, thickeners, and compatibilizers; we anticipate that these new hydrophobically modified CGs may be used for the same applications.