High performance functional bio-based polymers for skin-contact products in biomedical, cosmetic and sanitary industry
Personal care, Cosmetic and biomedical industries deal with high-value and/or large volume consumption of polymer-based products which are often derived from fossil sources. Although a number of alternative bio-based polymers is the subject of recent research, more effort is still needed to increase their specific functionalities and performances in order to proceed with their true translation into the market. PolyBioSkin aims at developing skin-contact biopolymer-based product parts with increased performance and functionality, such as parts of diapers, cosmetic pads, and wound dressings. Indeed, PolyBioSkin will focus on two main classes of bio-based polymers relevant for next-generation biobased industry: biopolyesters (polylactic acid and polyhydroxyalkanoates) because fully renewable, biocompatible and biodegradable and available at an industrial scale, and natural polysaccharides (cellulose/starch and chitin/chitosan), derived from biomass and food waste, for their peculiar properties, such as absorbency and Anti-infectivity. Films and textiles will be produced starting from these polymers and their combinations to prove that key products and/or product parts in sanitary, cosmetic and biomedical industry can be effectively translated from a fossil-derived to bio-based polymer production. PolyBioSkin will provide to skin-contact products a much more environmentally friendly end of life than the current accumulation in landfills or incineration, thanks to their biodegradability allowing the organic recycling.