The interaction of chitosan and olive oil: effects of degree of deacetylation and degree of polymerization

Carbohydr Polym. 2013 Jan 30;92(1):564-70. doi: 10.1016/j.carbpol.2012.09.035. Epub 2012 Sep 28.


The combined effects of degree of deacetylation (DD) and degree of polymerization (DP) on the ability of chitosan to interact with olive oil was studied. The oil-binding test, a method that makes use of olive oil as a representative fat, was adopted as a measure of the interaction of chitosan and olive oil. The oil-binding capacities of twelve chitosan samples with DPs ranging from 470 to 1450 and DDs of 75% to 95% were determined. The oil-binding capacities were then correlated to the DD and DP using partial least squares (PLS) regression. The generated PLS model had a root mean square error of prediction (RMSEP) of 9.1%. Results indicated that oil-binding capacity is a function of DD more than of DP. For chitosan with DD at the interval 50%<DD<90%, a negatively sloped linear correlation was obtained for DD and oil-binding capacity suggesting that hydrophobic intermolecular forces of attraction dominates the interaction of chitosan with olive oil. For chitosan with DD>90%, the observed deviation from the linear correlation increased. In this interval, free fatty acid anions facilitate the interaction of chitosan and olive oil. Free fatty acids form a stable ionic interaction with the former and a strong hydrophobic interaction with the latter.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Acetylation
  • Chitosan* / chemical synthesis
  • Chitosan* / chemistry
  • Fatty Acids / chemistry
  • Hydrophobic and Hydrophilic Interactions*
  • Ions / chemistry
  • Olive Oil
  • Plant Oils* / chemical synthesis
  • Plant Oils* / chemistry
  • Polymerization


  • Fatty Acids
  • Ions
  • Olive Oil
  • Plant Oils
  • Chitosan