Characterization and intermolecular interactions of hydroxypropyl guar solutions

Yu Cheng, Kirk M. Brown, Robert K. Prud'homme

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141 Scopus citations


Aqueous solutions of guar galactomannan and hydroxypropyl guars (HPG) with different molar substitution (MS) levels were studied using dilute solution viscometry and gel permeation chromatography. When guar is modified to HPG, the added hydroxypropyl groups sterically block the hydrogen bonding sites on the guar backbone and reduce the hydrogen bonding attractions between guar molecules. The effects of molar substitution on the intermolecular interactions are inferred from measurements of the Huggins coefficients, which measure intermolecular interactions in dilute solution, and molecular volumes, which reflect intrachain associations. The behavior can be divided into three regimes: (1) at low MS levels (0 < MS < ∼0.4), there is a sharp decrease in intermolecular interactions as a function of MS; (2) in the intermediate range (∼0.4 < MS < ∼1.0), interactions become independent of MS; (3) at high substitution levels (MS > ∼1.0), the temperature dependence of inter- and intramolecular hydrophobic interactions produces a temperature dependence in the Huggins coefficient and molecular volumes that is not seen at lower substitutions. By acid hydrolysis, HPG samples with a range of molecular weights and consistent polydispersities were obtained. On the basis of these samples, the Mark-Houwink-Sakurada parameters and "characteristic ratio" C∞ were evaluated for HPG (MS ∼ 0.6) and compared to the values for guar. The HPG chain stiffens as the degree of substitution increases.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)456-461
Number of pages6
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 8 2002

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Bioengineering
  • Biomaterials
  • Polymers and Plastics
  • Materials Chemistry


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