Chitin is found in the composition of the outer skeleton of insects and crustaceans. As an example, shrimp shell consists mainly of 3 components: protein, chitin and calcium carbonate, the latter being the major component. Chitin consists of around 20% of their shell composition. Chitin, after undergoing a chemical hydrolysis in concentrated alkaline solution at elevated temperatures, loses its acetyl groups, transforming into Chitosan is nontoxic, nonallergenic and biodegradable, and Chitosan films has been tested in the medical field as a curative wound dressing not only because of that, but also because Chitosan is known to have antimicrobial and antibacterial activities. The purpose of this research is to see if these properties can be enhanced by adding essential oils and natural powders to the Chitosan sheets, since they have the same properties themselves. To answer these questions, the different Chitosan sheets are going to be tested against different types of bacteria
With this project I hope to learn more about Chitosan’s properties and how essential oils and natural powders work when combined with other compounds.