Electrical discharge plasma occurring in a liquid phase, so called solution plasma, can generate highly active species, e.g. free radicals, which can involve in various chemical reactions, leading to less chemical uses. In this study, solution plasma was applied to deacetylation of chitin aiming to reduce the use of alkali. It was found that solution plasma could induce deacetylation of chitin hydrogels that were dispersed in MeOH/water solutions containing low NaOH concentrations (1–12%). Due to the action of free radicals, some extent of chain session of the polymer occurred during the plasma treatment. The degree of deacetylation and molecular weight of the obtained chitosan were 78% and 220 kDa, respectively, after the plasma treatment for five cycles (1 h/cycle) by using 90% MeOH/water solution containing 12% NaOH. The obtained chitosan could completely dissolve in 2% acetic acid solution and had antibacterial activities against S. aureus and E. coli.
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