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Sugar-based chemicals book chapter by NJIT professor takes ACS kudos
Date:6/21/2011

liamson, Iowa Corn Director of Research and Business Development. "Making epoxy from corn can be a win-win for public health, plastic manufacturers and for farmers."

Sugar-based chemicals can be used as building blocks to produce new monomers, polymers and additives for the commercial plastics and cosmetics industry. These are materials generally recognized as safe sugar compounds with a unique stereochemistry providing a ubiquitous platform for making cost-effective chemicals and polymers.

The book chapter focuses on isosorbide and its isomers as sugar-derived dianhydrohexitols. The two can be either incorporated in the backbone of new polymers or converted to low molar mass additives for thermoplastics and thermosets or as specialty chemicals. As the cost of petroleum rises, the attractiveness of renewable feedstocks for producing value-added products increases. The emergence of sustainable sugar derived chemicals (especially isosorbide modified products) offers attractive prospects with high potential for the next generation chemical industry.

Much attention has recently focused on BPA, which has been known to have estrogenic properties since the 1930s. BPA is widely used in processes that result in the lining for tin cans and key ingredients in plastics ranging from baby bottles to nail polish.

Unfortunately, the chemical bonds that link BPA in polymer structures are not completely stable and the polymer may slowly decay with time, releasing small amounts of it into materials with which it comes into contact, such as food or water. Recent studies have shown the widespread presence of tiny amounts of BPA in the environment. Even at minute levels BPA may still exert estrogen-like effects on living organisms.


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Contact: Sheryl Weinstein
sheryl.m.weinstein@njit.edu
973-596-3436
New Jersey Institute of Technology
Source:Eurekalert

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