Synthesis and Characterization of Gelatin Fragments Obtained by Controlled Degradation


Telechelic oligomers are attractive starting materials for the preparation of materials with tailorable properties. Here, peptide chains with defined molecular weight were obtained by controlled degradation of gelatin with hydroxylamine, which resulted in the cleavage of asparaginyl-glycine bonds and formation of new aspartyl hydroxamates and amino endgroups. The reaction of gelatin with hydroxylamine resulted in fragments with molecular weights of 15, 25, 37, and 50 kDa (determined by SDS-PAGE) independently of the reaction time and conditions. The fragment mixture showed typical single and triple helical organization in WAXS spectra, but rheological studies showed lower G′ and G″ values for gels from the fragment mixture than from gelatin, and lower gel-sol transitions temperatures. A more narrow distribution was found for the fragment mixture (Mn=25 kDa, PDI=1.4) than for commercial gelatin.
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