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Synthesis and self-assembly of aminyl and alkynyl substituted sophorolipids

Abstract : Sophorolipids are one of the most important microbial biosurfactants, because of their large-scale production and applications developed so far in the fields of detergency, microbiology, cosmetics or environmental science. However, the structural variety of native sophorolipids is limited/restricted, a limiting fact for the development of new properties and their potential applications. In their open acidic form, C18:1 sophorolipids (SL) are classically composed of a sophorose headgroup and a carboxylic acid (COOH) end-group. The carboxyl group gives them unique pH-responsive properties, but they are a poorly-reactive group and their charge can only be negative. To develop a new generation of pH-responsive, positively-charged, SL and to improve their reactivity for further functionalization, we develop here SLs with an amine (-NH2) or terminal alkyne (-C≡CH) end-group analogues. The amine group generates positively-charged SL and is more reactive than carboxylic acids, e.g. towards aldehydes; the alkyne group provides access to copper-based click chemistry. In this work, we synthesize (C18:1) and (C18:0) –NH2 and (C18:1) -C≡CH sophorolipid derivatives and we study their self-assembly properties in response to pH and/or temperature changes by means of static and dynamic light scattering, small angle (X-ray, neutron) scattering and cryogenic electron microscopy. Monounsaturated aminyl SL-C18:1-NH2 sophorolipids form a micellar phase in their neutral form at high pH and a mixed micellar-bilayer phase in their positively-charged form at low pH. Saturated aminyl SL-C18:0-NH2 sophorolipids form a micellar phase in their charged form at low pH and a twisted ribbon phase in their neutral form at high pH and monounsaturated alkynyl SL-C18:1-C≡CH sophorolipids form a main micellar phase at T> 51.8°C and a twisted ribbon phase at T< 51.8 °C.
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Abdoul Aziz Ba, Jonas Everaert, Alexandre Poirier, Patrick Le Griel, Wim Soetaert, et al.. Synthesis and self-assembly of aminyl and alkynyl substituted sophorolipids. Green Chemistry, Royal Society of Chemistry, 2020, ⟨10.1039/D0GC03053H⟩. ⟨hal-02959194⟩



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