Antifungal and antioxidant properties of chitosan polymers obtained from nontraditional Polybius henslowii sources

Francisco Avelelas, André Horta, Luís F. V. Pinto, Sónia Cotrim Marques, Paulo Marques Nunes, Rui Pedrosa, Sérgio Miguel Leandro

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28 Citations (Scopus)


Chitin was extracted from Polybius henslowii, a swimming crab, captured in large quantities throughout the Portuguese coast by purse seine vessels as bycatch. After standard chitin extraction procedures, water-soluble chitosan products were obtained via two different methods: (1) N-acetylation with the addition of acetic anhydride and (2) a reaction with hydrogen peroxide. The chemical structure and molecular weight of chitosan derivatives, water-soluble chitosan (WSC) and chitooligosaccharides (COS), were confirmed by Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FT-IR) and gel permeation chromatography (GPC).Antioxidant and metal chelation activities were evaluated, and the growth inhibition capacity was tested on four phytopatogens. The chitooligosaccharides from pereopods (pCOS) and shell body parts (sCOS) inhibited all fungal species tested, particularly Cryphonectria parasitica with 84.7% and 85.5%, respectively. Both radical scavenging and antifungal activities proved to be dose-dependent. Chitooligosaccharides with a low molecular weight (2.7, 7.4, and 10.4 Kg·mol-1) showed the highest activity among all properties tested. These results suggested that chitosan derivatives from P. henslowii raw material could potentially be used against phytopathogens or as ingredient in cosmetics and other products related to oxidative stress.

Original languageEnglish
Article number239
JournalMarine Drugs
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2019


  • Antifungal activity
  • Antioxidant activity
  • Chitooligosaccharides
  • Chitosan
  • Marine resources
  • Polybius henslowii

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