Polylactic acid (PLA) films containing 1 wt % and 3 wt % of lignin nanoparticles (pristine (LNP), chemically modified with citric acid (caLNP) and acetylated (aLNP)) were prepared by extrusion and characterized in terms of their overall performance as food packaging materials. Morphological, mechanical, thermal, UV-Vis barrier, antioxidant and antibacterial properties were assayed; appropriate migration values in food simulants and disintegration in simulated composting conditions were also verified. The results obtained indicated that all lignin nanoparticles succeeded in conferring UV-blocking, antioxidant and antibacterial properties to the PLA films, especially at the higher filler loadings assayed. Chemical modification of the fillers partially reduced the UV protection and the antioxidant properties of the resulting composites, but it induced better nanoparticles dispersion, reduced aggregates size, enhanced ductility and improved aesthetic quality of the films through reduction of the characteristic dark color of lignin. Migration tests and disintegration assays of the nanocomposites in simulated composting conditions indicated that, irrespectively of their formulation, the multifunctional nanocomposite films prepared behaved similarly to neat PLA.
UV Protective, Antioxidant, Antibacterial and Compostable Polylactic Acid Composites Containing Pristine and Chemically Modified Lignin Nanoparticles / Cavallo, Ema; He, Xiaoyan; Luzi, Francesca; Dominici, Franco; Cerrutti, Patricia; Bernal, Celina; Foresti, Maria Laura; Torre, Luigi; Puglia, Debora. - In: MOLECULES. - ISSN 1420-3049. - 26:1(2020), p. 126. [10.3390/molecules26010126]