Xiao Hu

Xiao Hu
Rowan University · Department of Physics and Astronomy

Associate Professor

About

147
Publications
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7,974
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Publications

Publications (147)
Article
There is an urgent need to develop technologies that can physically manipulate the structure of biocompatible and green polymer materials in order to tune their performance in an efficient, repeatable, easy-to-operate, chemical-free, non-contact, and highly controllable manner. Ultrasound technology produces a cavitation effect that promotes the ge...
Article
This work studies how to tune the semi-crystallinity of a blended microcrystalline cellulose/silk-fibroin biocomposite using ionic liquids and various coagulation agents. The morphological and thermal properties of the blended 1:1 polymeric system are studied as a function of polymer fabrication parameters. Ionic liquids, 1-ethyl-3-methylimidazoliu...
Article
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Hydrogels from biopolymers are readily synthesized, can possess various characteristics for different applications, and have been widely used in biomedicine to help with patient treatments and outcomes. Polysaccharides, polypeptides, and nucleic acids can be produced into hydrogels, each for unique purposes depending on their qualities. Examples of...
Article
In this study, flexible silk fibroin protein and biocompatible barium hexaferrite (BaM) nanoparticles were combined and electrospun into nanofibers, and their physical properties could be tuned through the mixing ratios and a water annealing process. Structural analysis indicates that the protein structure of the materials is fully controllable by...
Article
One of the most effective and promising strategies to develop novel biomaterials with unique, tunable structure and physicochemical properties is by creating composite materials that combine synthetic polymers with natural proteins using ionic liquids. In this study, biodegradable poly(d,l-lactic acid) (PDLLA) was blended with silk fibroin (SF) to...
Article
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In this study, the structural, thermal, and morphological properties of biocomposite films composed of wool keratin mixed with cellulose and regenerated with ionic liquids and various coagulation agents were characterized and explored. These blended films exhibit different physical and thermal properties based on the polymer ratio and coagulation a...
Article
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Ultrasound can be used in the biomaterial field due to its high efficiency, easy operation, no chemical treatment, repeatability and high level of control. In this work, we demonstrated that ultrasound is able to quickly regulate protein structure at the solution assembly stage to obtain the designed properties of protein-based materials. Silk fibr...
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Micro-/nanofibers have shown high promise as drug delivery vehicles due to their high porosity and surface-area-to-volume ratio. The current study utilizes air-spraying, a novel fiber fabrication technique, to create silk micro-/nanofibers without the need for a high voltage power source. Air-spraying was used to create silk fibrous mats embedded w...
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The novel use of ionic liquid as a solvent for biodegradable and natural organic biomaterials has increasingly sparked interest in the biomedical field. As compared to more volatile traditional solvents that rapidly degrade the protein molecular weight, the capability of polysaccharides and proteins to dissolve seamlessly in ionic liquid and form f...
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Electrically responsive biomaterials are an important and emerging technology in the fields of biomedical and material sciences. A great deal of research explores the integral role of electrical conduction in normal and diseased cell biology, and material scientists are focusing an even greater amount of attention on natural and hybrid materials as...
Article
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Biobased materials such as cellulose, chitin, silk, soy, and keratin are attractive alternatives to conventional synthetic materials for filtration applications. They are cheap, naturally abundant, and easily fabricated with tunable surface chemistry and functionality. With the planet’s increasing crisis due to pollution, the need for proper filtra...
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The crystalline structure of silk fibroin Silk I is generally considered to be a metastable structure; however, there is no definite conclusion under what circumstances this crystalline structure is stable or the crystal form will change. In this study, silk fibroin solution was prepared from B. Mori silkworm cocoons, and a combined method of freez...
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Biopolymer composites based on silk fibroin have shown widespread potential due to their brilliant applications in tissue engineering, medicine and bioelectronics. In our present work, biocomposite nanofilms with different special topologies were obtained through blending silk fibroin with crystallizable poly(L-lactic acid) (PLLA) at various mixtur...
Article
Polylactide (PLA) and silk fibroin (SF) are biocompatible green macromolecular materials with tunable structures and properties. In this study, microporous PLA/SF composites were fabricated under different pressures by a green solid solvent-free foaming technology. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM), dynamic mechanical analysis (DMA), differential...
Conference Paper
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Electrospinning is a widely used technique to draw recalcitrant biopolymer solutions into micro to nanoscale materials in a simple and economical way. The first focus of this research involved using ionic liquids as a non-volatile solvent for natural insoluble biopolymers such as silk and cellulose (or cellulose derivatives). Compared to traditiona...
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Corn zein protein is a cheap, widely available biopolymer that is easily extracted from corn and processed into useful forms. In this study, zein was dissolved along with several model drugs or sodium citrate, which was then cast into thin films or air-spun into nanofibers. The molecular weight, solubility, and charge of the selected model drugs ar...
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This study investigates combining the good biocompatibility and flexibility of silk protein with three types of widely used magnetic nanoparticles to comparatively explore their structures, properties and potential applications in the sustainability and biomaterial fields. The secondary structure of silk protein was quantitatively studied by infrar...
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Diabetic patients are especially susceptible to chronic wounds of the skin, which can lead to serious complications. Sodium citrate is one potential therapeutic molecule for the topical treatment of diabetic ulcers, but its viability requires the assistance of a biomaterial matrix. In this study, nanofibers and thin films fabricated from natural co...
Article
Nanofiber materials are commonly used as delivery vehicles for dermatological drugs due to their high surface-area-to-volume ratio, porosity, flexibility, and reproducibility. In this study air-jet spinning was used as a novel and economic method to fabricate corn zein nanofiber meshes with model drugs of varying solubility, molecular weight and ch...
Article
Protein is an ideal alternative to many synthetic components in green and bio-electronic products due to its natural abundance, high flexibility and excellent biocompatibility. Here, we report the development of new renewable thermal management materials based on a stable composite system of biocompatible silk fibroin (SF) protein with a small amou...
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Natural biomacromolecules such as structural proteins and polysaccharides are composed of the basic building blocks of life: amino acids and carbohydrates. Understanding their molecular structure, self-assembly and interaction in solvents such as ionic liquids (ILs) is critical for unleashing a flora of new materials, revolutionizing the way we fab...
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This study examines the effects of electrospun polycaprolactone (PCL) fiber density and strain rate on nanofiber mat mechanical properties. An automated track collection system was employed to control fiber number per mat and promote uniform individual fiber properties regardless of the duration of collection. Fiber density is correlated to the mec...
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Blended biocomposites created from the electrostatic and hydrophobic interactions between polysaccharides and structural proteins exhibit useful and unique properties. However, engineering these biopolymers into applicable forms is challenging due to the coupling of the material’s physicochemical properties to its morphology, and the undertaking th...
Article
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Electrospinning has gained constant enthusiasm and wide interest as a novel sustainable material processing technique due to its ease of operation and wide adaptability for fabricating eco-friendly fibers on a nanoscale. In addition, the device working parameters, spinning solution properties, and the environmental factors can have a significant ef...
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In this study, hexagonal boron nitride (h-BN) nanosheets and Bombyx mori silk fibroin (SF) proteins were combined and electrospun into BNSF nanofibers with different ratios. It was found that the surface morphology and crosslinking density of the nanofibers can be tuned through the mixing ratios. Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy study showed...
Article
Silk fibroin is a multi-segment natural protein composed of a heavy (H) chain, a light (L) chain and a P25 glycoprotein chain. Herein, we developed a dialysis separation technique under reducing conditions to break the disulfide bond between the H-chain and the L-chain, and remove the low molecular weight portions of the protein. Thus, a high-molec...
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Protein-polysaccharide composites have been known to show a wide range of applications in biomedical and green chemical fields. These composites have been fabricated into a variety of forms, such as films, fibers, particles, and gels, dependent upon their specific applications. Post treatments of these composites, such as enhancing chemical and phy...
Article
The modulation of structural fibrous protein and polysaccharide biopolymers for the design of biomaterials is still relatively challenging due to the non-trivial nature of the transformation from a biopolymer's native state to a more usable form. To gain insight into the nature of the molecular interaction between silk and cellulose chains, we char...
Chapter
Thermal analysis is a critical, analytical, and characterization tool in the field of materials sciences. Specific thermal properties of synthetic polymers and biomaterials with different phases and morphology can be determined through this technique. Traditional thermal analysis techniques include differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), thermogra...
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The combination of protein and polysaccharides with magnetic materials has been implemented in biomedical applications for decades. Proteins such as silk, collagen, and elastin and polysaccharides such as chitosan, cellulose, and alginate have been heavily used in composite biomaterials. The wide diversity in the structure of the materials includin...
Article
Flexible and water-insoluble regenerated silk materials have caught considerable interest due to their mechanical properties and numerous potential applications in medical fields. In this study, regenerated Mori (China), Thai, Eri, Muga and Tussah silk films were prepared by a formic acid-calcium chloride (FA) method, and their structures, morpholo...
Article
A protein-polymer blend system based on silkworm silk fibroin (SF) and polylactic acid (PLA) was systematically investigated to understand the interaction and miscibility of proteins and synthetic biocompatible polymers in the macro- and micro-meter scales, which can dramatically control the cell responses and enzyme biodegradation on the biomateri...
Article
The relationship between morphology and ionic conductivity of polysaccharide‐protein bio‐electrolyte membranes is explored in this study. Structural proteins and polysaccharides form hydrophobic and electrostatic interactions, and the resulting matrices can exhibit novel and useful properties. However, transforming these natural biomacromolecules f...
Article
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Fibrous proteins such as silks have been used as textile and biomedical materials for decades due to their natural abundance, high flexibility, biocompatibility, and excellent mechanical properties. In addition, they also can avoid many problems related to traditional materials such as toxic chemical residues or brittleness. With the fast developme...
Article
This study reports the effects of post-draw processing on the structural and functional properties of electrospun poly(vinylidene fluoride-co-hexafluoropropylene) (PVDF-HFP) nanofibers. Previous studies have independently demonstrated the potential of the electrospinning process or the post-drawing process to enhance the piezoelectric properties of...
Article
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Silk fibroin (SF) is a protein polymer derived from insects, which has unique mechanical properties and tunable biodegradation rate due to its variable structures. Here, the variability of structural, thermal, and mechanical properties of two domesticated silk films (Chinese and Thailand B. Mori) regenerated from formic acid solution, as well as th...
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As the average life expectancy continues to increase, so does the need for resorbable materials designed to treat, augment, or replace components and functions of the body. Naturally occurring biopolymers such as silks are already attractive candidates due to natural abundance and high biocompatibility accompanied by physical properties which are e...
Article
In recent years, biomaterials from abundant and renewable sources have shown potential in medicine and materials science alike. In this study, we combine theoretical modelling, molecular dynamics simulations, and several experimental techniques to understand the regeneration of cellulose/silk-, chitin/silk-, and chitosan/silk-based biocomposites af...
Article
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Fibrous materials have garnered much interest in the field of biomedical engineering due to their high surface-area-to-volume ratio, porosity, and tunability. Specifically, in the field of tissue engineering, fiber meshes have been used to create biomimetic nanostructures that allow for cell attachment, migration, and proliferation, to promote tiss...
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Nanoparticles are particles that range in size from about 1⁻1000 nanometers in diameter, about one thousand times smaller than the average cell in a human body. Their small size, flexible fabrication, and high surface-area-to-volume ratio make them ideal systems for drug delivery. Nanoparticles can be made from a variety of materials including meta...
Article
Electrospun nanofibers possess unique qualities such as nanodiameter, high surface area to volume ratio, biomimetic architecture, and tunable chemical and electrical properties. Numerous studies have demonstrated the potential of nanofibrous architecture to direct cell morphology, migration, and more complex biological processes such as differentia...
Article
Recently, high heat dissipation polymers are in huge demand especially with the rapid development of electron devices. However, traditional polymer composites usually suffer from both low thermal conductivity due to poor dispersibility and low concentration of fillers in the polymer matrix. To address this issue, it is principle to improve the comp...
Article
Microcrystalline cellulose and Bombyx mori silk blended biocomposite films were regenerated using various imidazolium-based ionic liquids. The films were characterized to understand the effect of the inter- and intra-molecular interactions upon the morphology and thermal properties. Various techniques were implemented to investigate structural, mor...
Article
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Energy harvested from human body movement can produce continuous, stable energy to portable electronics and implanted medical devices. The energy harvesters need to be light, small, inexpensive, and highly portable. Here we report a novel biocompatible device made of poly (vinylidene fluoride-co-hexafluoropropylene) (PVDF-HFP) nanofibers on flexibl...
Article
Biomaterials made from natural proteins and polysaccharides have become increasingly popular in the biomedical field due to their good biocompatibility and tunable biodegradability. However, the low miscibility of polysaccharides with proteins presents challenges in the creation of protein-polysaccharide composite materials. In this study, neat 1-a...
Article
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There is a pressing need for long-term, controlled drug release for sustained treatment of chronic or persistent medical conditions and diseases. Guided drug delivery is difficult because therapeutic compounds need to survive numerous transport barriers and binding targets throughout the body. Nanoscale protein-based polymers are increasingly used...
Article
Green graphene materials prepared by photoreduction of graphite oxide were first time blended with aqueous-based silk fibroin proteins to improve the mechanical and thermal properties of silk biomaterials, and their nanocomposite interaction mechanism was illustrated. Powder X-ray diffraction (XRD) analysis confirmed the complete exfoliation of gra...
Article
Regenerated Thai silk fibroin films were successfully fabricated using a novel calcium chloride–formic acid solution system. Different concentrations of calcium chloride (1.0, 1.5, 2.0, 3.0, 4.0, and 6.0 mass% in formic acid) could be embedded into the silk structure, and their glass transition temperature (Tg), specific heat (Cp), and thermal stab...
Article
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Cellulose and silk blended biomaterial films were regenerated from ionic liquid solution and investigated to characterize and understand the effect of inter- and intra-molecular interactions upon the morphology and thermal properties. The blended films were dissolved in 1-allyl-3-methylimidazolium chloride ionic liquid, coagulated and regenerated w...
Conference Paper
A common method to precisely control the material properties is to evenly distribute functional nanomaterials within the substrate. For example, it is possible to mix a silk solution and nanomaterials together to form one tuned silk sample. However, the nanomaterials are likely to aggregate in the traditional manual mixing processes. Here we report...
Conference Paper
An average human body produces a large amount of energy throughout the day. A significant portion of this energy is utilized as mechanical energy. Body movement such as footfalls and arm swings can produce enough energy to power portable electronics using mechanical-to-electrical energy harvesters. These devices should be small, light, portable, an...
Article
The study reports a nanomanufacturing method that facilitates post-drawing of electrospun polymer nanofibers. Post-drawing is critical in conventional microfiber processing to enhance mechanical strength, but has been difficult to implement with nanofibers. Here, a parallel automated track collector was designed to permit continuous processing of t...
Article
Full-text available
The fabrication of cellulose-spider silk bio-nanocomposites comprised of cellulose nanocrystals (CNCs) and recombinant spider silk protein fused to a cellulose binding domain (CBD) is described. Silk-CBD successfully binds cellulose, and unlike recombinant silk alone, silk-CBD self-assembles into microfibrils even in the absence of CNCs. Silk-CBD-C...
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This study reports the formation of biocompatible hydrogels using protein polymers from natural silk cocoon fibroins and sheep wool keratins. Silk fibroin protein contains β-sheet secondary structures, allowing for the formation of physical cross-linkers in the hydrogels. Comparative studies were performed on two groups of samples. In the first gro...
Article
Bombyx Mori silk and polyvinyl acetate (PVAc) were combined in different ratios to form protein–synthetic polymer blend films. The effect of silk content on PVAc blends was investigated by scanning electron microscopy (SEM), differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR). SEM images revealed that silk and...
Article
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Silk proteins are natural biopolymers that have extensive structural possibilities for chemical and mechanical modifications to facilitate novel properties, functions, and applications in the biomedical field. The versatile processability of silk fibroins (SF) into different forms such as gels, films, foams, membranes, scaffolds, and nanofibers mak...
Article
Silk fibroin materials can be used as various kinds of biomedical materials. Here, we report a comparative study of silk-silk blend materials using thermal analysis and infrared spectroscopy. Four groups of silk-silk blend films were fabricated from aqueous solutions by blending Chinese Bombyx mori (Mori) with Indian Antheraea mylitta (Tussah) silk...
Article
The desire for flexible electronics is booming, and development of bioelectronics for health monitoring, internal body procedures, and other biomedical applications is heavily responsible for the growing market. Most current fabrication techniques for flexible bioelectronics, however, do not use materials that optimize both biocompatibility and mec...