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Concept: Beeswax


A simple method for incorporating amine groups in hydrogenated castor oil (HCO) to produce wax for beeswax or carnauba wax substitution in packaging and coating was developed. From the conversion rate of the products, HCO was reacted with ethanolamine at 150°C for 5 h, and the molar ratio of HCO and ethanolamine was 1:4. The hardness of the final product was seven times higher than that of beeswax, the cohesiveness of the final product was 1.3 times higher than that of beeswax and approximately one half of that of carnauba wax, and the melting point of the final product is 98°C. The Fourier transform Infrared spectroscopy showed that the amide groups were incorporated to form the amide products. In coating application, the results showed that the force of the final product coating cardboard was higher than that of beeswax and paraffin wax and less than that of carnauba wax. After 24 h soaking, the compression forces were decreased. HCO fatty acid wax can be an alternative wax for carnauba wax and beeswax in coating applications.

Concepts: Spectroscopy, Wax, Fourier transform spectroscopy, Beeswax, Waxes


Objective: Solventless dry powder coating methods have many advantages compared to solvent-based methods: they are more economical, simpler, safer, more environmentally friendly and easier to scale up. The purpose of this study was to investigate a highly effective dry powder coating method using the mechanofusion system, a mechanochemical treatment equipped with high compressive and shearing force.Materials and methods: Acetaminophen (AAP) and carnauba wax (CW) were selected as core particles of the model drug and coating material, respectively. Mixtures of AAP and CW with and without talc were processed using the mechanofusion system.Results: Sustained AAP release was observed by selecting appropriate processing conditions for the rotation speed and the slit size. The dissolution rate of AAP processed with CW substantially decreased with an increase in talc content up to 40% of the amount of CW loaded. Increasing the coating amount by two-step addition of CW led to more effective coating and extended drug release. Scanning electron micrographs indicated that CW adhered and showed satisfactory coverage of the surface of AAP particles.Conclusion: Effective CW coating onto the AAP surface was successfully achieved by strictly controlling the processing conditions and the composition of core particles, coating material and glidant. Our mechanochemical dry powder coating method using the mechanofusion system is a simple and promising means of solventless pharmaceutical coating.

Concepts: Wax, Scanning electron microscope, Rotation, Micrograph, Beeswax, Shoe polish, Waxes, Carnauba wax


This article is an introduction and general discussion regarding the use of Fisher-Tropsch wax in petroleum jelly applications. Traditionally, petroleum jelly is prepared from a blend of microwax, paraffin wax and mineral oil that are all derived from crude oil. Sasol Wax has successfully prepared a petroleum jelly based on predominantly to fully synthetic Fisher-Tropsch wax. Sasol Wax was awarded a patent P53898ZP00-29 November 11 for a predominantly to fully synthetic petroleum jelly based on Fisher-Tropsch wax blends. The benefits of Fisher-Tropsch wax discussed in this article include the absence of aromatic compounds and polycyclic aromatic compounds in Fisher-Tropsch wax as well as the sustainable production that is possible with Fisher-Tropsch wax, as opposed to paraffin wax that may be affected by the closure of group I Base Oil plants. This article will be the first in a series of articles from the same authors, and follow-up articles will include solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance and crystallization studies to determine the influence of predominantly synthetic waxes on petroleum jelly network structures compared with more traditional mineral oil-derived petroleum jellies, final product performance and stability of synthetic petroleum jelly used in, for example, personal care lotions or creams. The influence of oxygenated compounds and product safety and rheological properties (including primary skin feel upon application and secondary skin feel after application) of synthetic petroleum jellies compared with traditional mineral oil-derived petroleum jellies are discussed.

Concepts: Petroleum, Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon, Hydrocarbon, Paraffin, Wax, Alkane, Beeswax, Mineral oil


Rapid advancements in carbon-based fillers have enabled a new and more promising platform in the development of electromagnetic attenuation composites. Alignment of fillers in composites with specific structures and morphologies has been widely pursued to achieve high performance based on taking advantage of unique filler characteristics. In this work, few-layer graphene (FLG), obtained from direct exfoliation of graphite, was fabricated into paraffin wax to prepare FLG/wax composites and investigate their electromagnetic interference (EMI) shielding performance. The as-exfoliated FLG/wax samples have shown much improved EMI performance compared to the commercial graphite/wax ones. For further improvement of EMI shielding performance, split-press-merge approaches were applied to align the FLG fillers to achieve anisotropic characteristics in the plane perpendicular to the pressing direction. Much enhanced EMI shielding performance coupled with an improvement in absorption and reflection was observed in the post-alignment FLG/wax composites. An average interparticle distance model associated with improved electrically conducting interconnection and enlarged effective reflection regions with respect to enhanced reflection efficiency were discussed. The results suggest a platform and promising opportunities for preparing high-performance EMI shielding composites.

Concepts: Paraffin, Wax, Alkane, Graphene, Plane, Electromagnetic interference, Beeswax, Candle


Infrared microspectroscopy is an emerging approach for disease analysis owing to its capability for in situ chemical characterization of pathological processes. Synchrotron-based infrared microspectroscopy (SR-IMS) provides ultra-high spatial resolution for profiling biochemical events associated with disease progression. Spectral alterations were observed in cultured oral cells derived from healthy, precancerous, primary, and metastatic cancers. An innovative wax-physisorption-based kinetic FTIR imaging method for the detection of oral precancer and cancer was demonstrated successfully. The approach is based on determining the residual amount of paraffin wax (C(25)H(52)) or beeswax (C(46)H(92)O(2)) on a sample surface after xylene washing. This amount is used as a signpost of the degree of physisorption that altered during malignant transformation. The results of linear discriminant analysis (LDA) of oral cell lines indicated that the methylene (CH(2)) and methyl group (CH(3)) stretching vibrations in the range of 3,000-2,800 cm(-1) have the highest accuracy rate (89.6 %) to discriminate the healthy keratinocytes (NHOK) from cancer cells. The results of wax-physisorption-based FTIR imaging showed a stronger physisorption with beeswax in oral precancerous and cancer cells as compared with that of NHOK, which showed a strong capability with paraffin wax. The infrared kinetic study of oral cavity tissue showed a consistency in the wax physisorption of the cell lines. On the basis of our findings, these results show the potential use of wax-physisorption-based kinetic FTIR imaging for the early screening of oral cancer lesions and the chemical changes during oral carcinogenesis.

Concepts: Cancer, Metastasis, Oncology, Carcinoma in situ, Paraffin, Wax, Beeswax, Candle


Silk fibroin (SF) has been widely used as a wound dressing material due to its suitable physical and biological characteristics. In this study, a non-adhesive wound dressing which applies to cover the wound surface as an absorbent pad that would absorb wound fluid while accelerate wound healing was developed. The modification of SF fabrics by wax coating was purposed to prepare the non-adhesive wound dressing that is required in order to minimize pain and risk of repeated injury. SF woven fabrics were coated with different types of waxes including shellac wax, beeswax, or carnauba wax. Physical and mechanical properties of the wax-coated SF fabrics were characterized. It was clearly observed that all waxes could be successfully coated on the SF fabrics, possibly due to the hydrophobic interactions between hydrophobic domains of SF and waxes. The wax coating improved tensile modulus and percentage of elongation of the SF fabrics due to the denser structure and the thicker fibers coated. The in vitro degradation study demonstrated that all wax-coated SF fabrics remained up to 90% of their original weights after 7 weeks of incubation in lysozyme solution under physiological conditions. The wax coating did not affect the degradation behavior of the SF fabrics. A peel test of the wax-coated SF fabrics was carried out in the partial- and full-thickness wounds of porcine skin in comparison to that of the commercial wound dressing. Any wax-coated SF fabrics were less adhesive than the control, as confirmed by less number of cells attached and less adhesive force. This might be that the wax-coated SF fabrics showed the hydrophobic property, allowing the loosely adherence to the hydrophilic wound surface. In addition, the in vivo biocompatibility test of the wax-coated SF fabrics was performed in Sprague-Dawley rats with subcutaneous model. The irritation scores indicated that the carnauba wax-coated SF fabric was not irritant while the shellac wax or beeswax-coated SF fabrics were slightly irritant, comparing with the commercial wound dressing. Therefore, SF fabrics coated with waxes, particularly carnauba wax, would be promising choices of non-adhesive wound dressing.

Concepts: Wound healing, Wound, Wax, Chronic wound, Beeswax, Shoe polish, Waxes, Carnauba wax


The applications of superhydrophobic coatings in daily life are receiving increasing attention. Here, we report a general approach for preparing superhydrophobic coatings with high repellency to daily consumed liquid foods based on food grade waxes. The coatings are prepared by spray-coating the homogeneous wax suspensions in ethanol followed by annealing at 40 °C. The wax suspensions are formed by the heating dissolution-cooling precipitation-ultrasonication process thanks to the unique solubility of the waxes in ethanol. Ultrasonication of the wax suspension is helpful to improve superhydrophobicity by reducing the size of the wax microplatelets. Annealing at 40 °C could enhance mechanical stability of the coatings. The coatings are superhydrophobic with a water contact angle of 158.2° and a sliding angle of 7.3°. The coatings are resistant to intense water jetting and immersion in corrosive aqueous solutions. In addition, the coatings show excellent anti-adhesive properties for various liquid foods including cola, honey, milk and yoghourt. Moreover, the coatings are applicable onto different substrates (e.g., glass slide, PET plate and polyethylene plate) and could be prepared using different waxes (e.g., paraffin wax, beeswax and microcrystalline wax). We believe that the wax superhydrophobic coatings could find applications in various fields such as anti-adhesion of liquid foods, fruit preservation and anti-bioadhesion, etc.

Concepts: Paraffin, Wax, Alkane, Solution, Beeswax, Waxes, Candle, Microcrystalline wax


Today the high demand for electronics leads to massive production of waste, thus green materials based electronic devices are becoming more important for environmental protection and sustainability. The biomaterial based hydrogels are widely used in tissue engineering, but their uses in photonics are limited. In this study, silk fibroin protein in hydrogel form is explored as a bio-friendly alternative to conventional polymers for lens applications in light-emitting diodes. The concentration of silk fibroin protein and crosslinking agent had direct effects on optical properties of silk hydrogel. The spatial radiation intensity distribution was controlled via dome- and crater-type silk-hydrogel lenses. The hydrogel lens showed a light extraction efficiency over 0.95 on a warm white LED. The stability of silk hydrogel lens is enhanced approximately three-folds by using a biocompatible/biodegradable poly(ester-urethane) coating and more than three orders of magnitude by using an edible paraffin wax coating. Therefore, biomaterial lenses show promise for green optoelectronic applications.

Concepts: Optics, Light, Paraffin, Wax, Light-emitting diode, Diode, Electronics, Beeswax


As organisms develop, they first invest resources in survival and growth, but after reaching a certain condition they start to also invest in reproduction. Likewise, superorganisms, such as honey bee colonies, first invest in survival and growth, and later commit resources to reproduction once the number of workers in the colony surpasses a reproductive threshold. The first form of reproductive investment for a honey bee colony is the building of beeswax comb made of special large cells used for rearing males (drones). How do the workers sense that their colony is large enough to start building this ‘drone comb’? To address this question, we experimentally increased three possible cues of colony size - worker density, volatile pheromone concentration and nest temperature - and looked for effects on the bees' comb construction. Only the colonies that experienced increased worker density were stimulated to build a higher proportion of drone comb. We then monitored and quantified potential cues in small and large colonies, to determine which cues change with colony size. We found that workers in large colonies, relative to small ones, have increased contact rates, spend more time active and experience less variable worker density. Whereas unicellular and multicellular organisms use mainly chemical cues to sense their sizes, our results suggest that at least one superorganism, a honey bee colony, uses physical cues to sense its size and thus its developmental state.

Concepts: Reproduction, Organism, Insect, Honey bee, Beekeeping, Bumblebee, Apidae, Beeswax


The objective of this study was to develop functional nanostructured lipid carriers (NLCs) using beeswax (BW), propolis wax (PW) and pomegranate seed oil (PSO). NLCs were prepared by a melt emulsification-ultra sonication technique. The influences of solid lipid composition, surfactant blend concentration (2, 4, and 6% of formulation) and PSO content (10, 30 and 50% of total lipid phase) were investigated. Statistical evaluations revealed that the formulation variables had significant effects on physical properties of NLC. The developed nanocarriers presented particle sizes ranging from 71 to 366 nm, leading to excellent physical stability. The optimum formulations with minimum particle size and high zeta potential value were PW and BW + glycerol behenate samples, containing 10% oil and 6% surfactant. DSC and XRD studies indicated that the addition of oil to the lipid phase could disturb the crystalline order and form lattice defects. TEM observations exhibited spherical morphology of the NLCs.

Concepts: Wax, Fruit, Crystallographic defect, Colloidal chemistry, Paint, Jojoba, Beeswax