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A new approach for the hydrophobization of finished cellulosic substrates based on a previously reported enzymatic technique is proposed. Commercial finished paper was hydrophobized by using laccase from Trametes villosa in combination with lauryl gallate (LG) as hydrophobic compound. The efficiency of the method was increased by the use of a lignosulfonate as a natural dispersant to improve the surface distribution of LG on the paper, raise its hydrophobicity and help preserve the enzyme activity. No similar threefold effect from a single compound for the improvement of enzymatic treatments was previously reported. The influence of processing conditions including the LG dose, treatment time and temperature was also examined, resulting in further increased hydrophobicity. Efficient fiber bonding and chemical functionalization were confirmed by thorough washing and Soxhlet extraction of the paper. As shown here for the first time, enzyme treatments have the potential to improve the surface hydrophobicity of paper-based media
CitationCusola, O. [et al.]. Application of surface enzyme treatments using laccase and a hydrophobic compound to paper-based media. "Bioresource technology", 11 Gener 2013, vol. 131, p. 521-526.
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