Morphology study of alginate micro/nano particles for the encapsulation of divalents Mg2+ AND Zn2+ IONS

Marcos A. Sabino, Onelys Sereno, Fabio Lins Dantas


This research work aimed to promote the formation of alginic acid particles and the encapsulation of divalent ions, such as Zn2+ and Mg2+; but using a combination of internal alginate gelation and micro-emulsification method. Both ions are essential elements of the human body, i.e., they are present in tissues and body fluids and participates in many bodily functions. The influence of different parameters was evaluated relate to the formation of the particles in micro/nano-scale, and their morphology was observed. The concentration of both ions used in the formulation was varied considering [0.075, 0.15 and 0.25] mol/L. It was found in general that the formation of particles in nanoscale, with a spherical shape and smooth surfaces (also by Atomic force microscopy AFM) after characterizing by electron microscopy (Scanning SEM and Transmission TEM) with energy-dispersed analysis of X-rays (SEM/EDX). The only evidence of formation of particles at higher concentrations of the ion ([0.25] mol/L) was found when the magnesium ion was used (MgSO4) while the smallest particles (≤100nm) were formed when ZnSO4 ([0.25] mol/L) was used. The results suggest that these particles can be used as a coat or carrier for essential nutrients for food fortification, for instance, for others applications in biomedicine or charge drugs in delivery systems.


Alginic Acid, divalent ions Zn2+ and Mg2+, Internal Gelation, micro-emulsification.

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