Carboxymethyl-hexanoyl chitosan (CHC) has the ability to self-assemble into nanocapsules in an aqueous solution and it has recently shown potential in numerous biomedical applications. Here we investigate the protein loading efficiency and release, as well as the structural properties of CHC protein nanocarriers. Bovine serum albumin (BSA) or its chromophore labelled version, fluorescein-BSA, was used as a model protein and the loading was performed with a simple mixing of pre-formed nanocapsules and protein. Dynamic light scattering and zeta potential analysis revealed that protein loaded nanocarriers with high positive zeta potential were formed. The protein loaded nanocarriers displayed a loading efficiency of 75% and a very slow protein release. In summary, our results highlight the potential of CHC as a protein nanocarrier, but also indicate that protein-CHC interactions need to be considered in protein containing CHC formulations where protein release is not the main function.
- Amphiphilic chitosan
- Carboxymethyl-hexanoyl chitosan
- Protein delivery