Cytotoxicity against cancer cells of chitosan oligosaccharides prepared from chitosan powder degraded by electrical discharge plasma

Chayanaphat Chokradjaroen, Sewan Theeramunkong, Hiroharu Yui, Nagahiro Saito, Ratana Rujiravanit

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

11 Citations (Scopus)


Chitosan oligosaccharides, which obtain from degradation of chitosan, possess some interesting molecular weight-dependent biological properties, especially anticancer activity. Therefore, the conversion of chitosan to chitosan oligosaccharides with specific molecular weight has been continuously investigated in order to find effective strategies that can achieve both economic feasibility and environmental concerns. In this study, a novel process was developed to heterogeneously degrade chitosan powder by highly active species generated by electrical discharge plasma in a dilute salt solution (0.02 M) without the addition of other chemicals. The degradation rate obtained from the proposed process was comparable to that obtained from some other methods with the addition of acids and oxidizing agents. Separation of the water-soluble degraded products containing chitosan oligosaccharides from the reaction solution was simply done by filtration. The obtained chitosan oligosaccharides were further evaluated for an influence of their molecular weights on cytotoxicity against cancer cells and the selectivity toward cancer and normal cells.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)20-30
Number of pages11
JournalCarbohydrate Polymers
Publication statusPublished - 2018 Dec 1
Externally publishedYes



  • Cancer cells
  • Chitosan
  • Chitosan oligosaccharides
  • Degradation
  • Electrical discharge plasma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Organic Chemistry
  • Polymers and Plastics
  • Materials Chemistry

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