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Polysaccharides, Volume 5, Issue 1 (March 2024) – 4 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): The Dittany of Crete (Origanum dictamnus L. Lamiaceae) is a local endemic plant of Crete (Greece) that creates polysaccharide-containing subcuticular compartments presenting biological activity against pathogenic fungi. This field study developed a fertilization scheme for O. dictamnus based on polysaccharide-based Integrated Nutrient Management (INM), conventional inorganic fertilizers and biostimulants via foliar and soil application. Plant growth, leaf chlorophyll fluorescence and color, leaf content of chlorophyll, critical antioxidant compounds and nutrients were determined. The INM by foliar application was the optimal stimulatory scheme improving key herbal quality features. The improved herbal quality in the Dittany of Crete is exploited in favor of its utilization as a raw material for tea preparation, medicinal purposes, natural food flavoring and/or food preservatives. View this paper
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0 pages, 2234 KiB  
Article
Exploring the Potential of 3D-Printable Agar–Urea Hydrogels as an Efficient Method of Delivering Nitrogen in Agricultural Applications
by Wathsala Dissanayake, Hossein Najaf Zadeh, Ali Reza Nazmi, Campbell Stevens, Tim Huber and Pramuditha L. Abhayawardhana
Polysaccharides 2024, 5(1), 49-66; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/polysaccharides5010004 (registering DOI) - 7 Mar 2024
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Abstract
Amidst population growth and challenges with existing fertilizers, the development of smart and environmentally friendly agrochemicals is imperative. While 3D printing is widespread, its potential in slow-release agrochemicals remains unexplored. This proof-of-concept study employed solvent casting and 3D printing to develop agar–urea structures. [...] Read more.
Amidst population growth and challenges with existing fertilizers, the development of smart and environmentally friendly agrochemicals is imperative. While 3D printing is widespread, its potential in slow-release agrochemicals remains unexplored. This proof-of-concept study employed solvent casting and 3D printing to develop agar–urea structures. These structures, comprising 2.5% (w/w) agar, incorporated either 7% (w/w) or 13% (w/w) urea as nitrogen nutrients. Rheological, mechanical, and morphological properties and sorption capabilities were explored. Rheological analysis revealed a substantial impact of urea, enhancing material resistance to deformation. In mechanical tests, inclusion of urea showed no significant impact on compressive strength. SEM analysis confirmed the successful entrapment of urea within the agar matrix. The inclusion of urea resulted in a diminished water sorption capacity, attributed to the urea–water interactions disrupting the hydrogen bonding ability of agar. Agar–urea inks were employed in 3D printing utilizing the direct-ink writing technique, and the nitrogen release behavior was investigated. Results revealed nearly complete urea release in the positive control within 48 h. In contrast, agar–urea formulations with 7% (w/w) and 13% (w/w) achieved nitrogen release rates of 88.8% and 94.4%, respectively, suggesting potential for 3D-printed agar formulations to modify the immediate release behavior seen in conventional urea fertilizers. Full article
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21 pages, 3576 KiB  
Article
A Polysaccharide-Based Integrated Nutrient Management System Enhances the Antioxidant Properties in Origanum dictamnus (Lamiaceae), a Valuable Local Endemic Plant of Crete
by Konstantinos Paschalidis, Dimitrios Fanourakis, Georgios Tsaniklidis, Vasileios A. Tzanakakis, Ioanna Kardamaki, Fotis Bilias, Eftihia Samara, Ioannis Ipsilantis, Katerina Grigoriadou, Theodora Matsi, Georgios Tsoktouridis and Nikos Krigas
Polysaccharides 2024, 5(1), 28-48; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/polysaccharides5010003 - 26 Feb 2024
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Abstract
Origanum dictamnus L. (Lamiaceae), a local endemic plant of Crete (Greece), creates polysaccharide-containing subcuticular compartments presenting biological activity against phytopathogenic fungi, and, among others, significantly affects the fungal cell wall polysaccharides. This field study introduces a fertilization scheme for O. dictamnus, which [...] Read more.
Origanum dictamnus L. (Lamiaceae), a local endemic plant of Crete (Greece), creates polysaccharide-containing subcuticular compartments presenting biological activity against phytopathogenic fungi, and, among others, significantly affects the fungal cell wall polysaccharides. This field study introduces a fertilization scheme for O. dictamnus, which was developed and refined to optimize the yield as well as critical herbal quality aspects. Five fertilization schemes were investigated, based on a polysaccharide-based Integrated Nutrient Management (INM), a mixture of conventional inorganic fertilizers (ChF) and two biostimulants (not algae) via foliar and soil application. Plant growth, together with leaf chlorophyll fluorescence and color (SPAD meter, DA meter, Chroma Meter) were determined. The leaf content of chlorophyll, three critical antioxidant compounds (carotenoids, flavonoids, phenols) and nutrients were also assessed. Considering all three antioxidants together, the enhanced efficiency, non-toxic, water-soluble, polysaccharide-based INM by foliar application was the most stimulatory scheme, playing an important role in plant growth and development. The present field study provides, for the first time, baseline fertilization data improving key herbal quality features in O. dictamnus and unravels the attainment of high antioxidant properties. The latter may be exploited in favor of its further utilization as a raw material for tea preparation, medicinal purposes, natural food flavoring and/or food preservative. Full article
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12 pages, 984 KiB  
Article
Characterization of Lignocellulose Nanofibril from Desilicated Rice Hull with Carboxymethylation Pretreatment
by Audrey Zahra, Seo-Kyoung Lim and Soo-Jeong Shin
Polysaccharides 2024, 5(1), 16-27; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/polysaccharides5010002 - 22 Jan 2024
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Abstract
Rice hulls have a high-value potential, and the lignocellulose components are underutilized compared to other biomass resources. Pretreatments such as carboxymethylation of the degree of substitutions (DS) are used to prepare lignocellulose nanofibril (LCNF) from desilicated rice hull (DSRH). High-pressure homogenization (HPH) and [...] Read more.
Rice hulls have a high-value potential, and the lignocellulose components are underutilized compared to other biomass resources. Pretreatments such as carboxymethylation of the degree of substitutions (DS) are used to prepare lignocellulose nanofibril (LCNF) from desilicated rice hull (DSRH). High-pressure homogenization (HPH) and grinding are used to process nano fibrillation. The composition of LCNF DS of desilicated rice hull was identified using 1H NMR for polysaccharide composition and DS determination, acetone and hot water extraction to evaluate extractives, and Klason lignin for lignin content. LCNF was prepared using various DS from 0.2 until DS 0.4. The results showed that LCNF DS has a more than −30 mV zeta potential, suitable for stable nanoemulsion formulations. The particle size of LCNF DS decreases with an increasing carboxyl content in the hydrogel and an increasing number of passes through grinding and high-pressure homogenization, of which LCNF DS 0.4 had the smallest width and length. Mechanical processes further reduced the size. Full article
(This article belongs to the Topic Polymers from Renewable Resources, 2nd Volume)
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15 pages, 4286 KiB  
Article
Labeling of Polysaccharides with Biotin and Fluorescent Dyes
by Alexander Tuzikov, Nadezhda Shilova, Tatiana Ovchinnikova, Alexey Nokel, Olga Patova, Yuriy Knirel, Tatiana Chernova, Tatiana Gorshkova and Nicolai Bovin
Polysaccharides 2024, 5(1), 1-15; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/polysaccharides5010001 - 27 Dec 2023
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Abstract
Examples of labeling polysaccharides at hydroxyl groups are described in this paper, which are especially in demand for molecules with a blocked reducing end. The protocols presented are suitable for the microscale synthesis of labeled polysaccharides that do not require a chromatography step [...] Read more.
Examples of labeling polysaccharides at hydroxyl groups are described in this paper, which are especially in demand for molecules with a blocked reducing end. The protocols presented are suitable for the microscale synthesis of labeled polysaccharides that do not require a chromatography step for isolation. Examples of hydroxyl labeling include (1) direct modification with fluorescein isothiocyanate; (2) reaction with a fluorescein-dichlorotriazine derivative; (3) reaction with biotin-dichlorotriazine; (4) indirect two-step modification (given for glycosphingolipid) with glutaric anhydride followed by amidation with aminospacered BODIPY or SuCy5. The labeling of carboxyl groups of hyaluronic acid with BODIPY is also described. The staining of plant tissue sections with biotinylated polysaccharide versus being fluorescein labeled is compared. Full article
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