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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Performance of Bioactive Molecules on Cotton and Other Textiles

Authors
item EDWARDS, JUDSON
item Goheen, Steven - BATTELLE, PACIFIC NW DIV.

Submitted to: Journal of Textile and Apparel, Technology, and Management
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: October 1, 2006
Publication Date: November 20, 2006
Citation: Edwards, J.V., Goheen, S.C. 2006. Performance of Bioactive Molecules on Cotton and Other Textiles. Research Journal of Textile and Apparel. 10(4). p. 19-32.

Interpretive Summary: The creation of new markets for value-added, protective cotton textiles is currently an agriculture issue. Work in the Southern Regional Research Center’s Cotton Chemistry and Utilization Research Unit is addressing the application of bio-active molecules to cotton textiles as a model to explore the creation of new value-added cotton products with highly selective properties and an environmentally acceptable finishes. In this paper four types of biologically active molecules were studied on cotton textiles. The types of biologically active molecules include proteins, peptides, carbohydrates, and lipids. As an example of a proteins biological activity on cotton, enzyme conjugates of cellulose on cotton performance fabrics were studied for their antimicrobial activity. Carbohydrates on cotton textiles were also studied, for their ability to accelerate clotting and as an antibacterial finish. Lipids as protective agents for the skin have been researched. The paper summarizes this type of work while presenting some new results. Both the cotton farmer and consumer would benefit from an expanded market of this type for value added cotton textiles.

Technical Abstract: Four types of biologically active molecules were examined for their structure/activity relationships as applied to textile functionalization. Bio-molecules including enzymes, peptides, carbohydrates, and lipids have been found to retain their activity when linked to cotton fabrics. Wound dressing protection against the protease destruction caused by human neutrophil elastase was examined with cellulose conjugates and formulations of peptides, carbohydrates, and lipids attached with various chemistries to cotton dressings. These serve as a model for protective textiles at the surface of the skin. Additional biological activities that were explored included, antibacterial and haemostatic fabrics related to wound healing, and neurotoxin neutralization related to decontamination. Lysozyme was found to have robust antibacterial activity when conjugated to cotton. Peptide conjugates of cellulose have been explored as enzyme substrates, antimicrobial agents, and cell adhesion promoters on textiles for wound healing. Carbohydrates ranging from low molecular weight monosaccharides to high molecular weight polysaccharides have both molecular and functional activity when crosslinked or grafted onto cotton with numerous textile performance properties. Textile bound lipids have been explored for a variety of applications including antibacterial, hygienic function, and enzyme inhibition. A lipid: albumin complex that serves as a carrier transfer agent involved in enzyme inhibition is given as an example.

Last Modified: 7/28/2014
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