Pure keratin membrane and fibers from chicken feather

Bomou Ma, Xue Qiao, Xiuliang Hou, Yiqi Yang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

94 Scopus citations


In this research, keratin was extracted from the disposable chicken feather using l-cysteine as reducing agent. Then, it was re-dissolved in the sodium carbonate-sodium bicarbonate buffer, and the pure keratin membrane and fiber were fabricated by doctor-blade casting process and wet spinning method, respectively. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM), fourier transform infrared (FT-IR) spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction (XRD) and thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) were used to characterize the chemical and physical properties of resulting powder, membrane and fiber. Compared with the raw chicken feather, the regenerated keratin materials retain its chemical structure and thermal stability, their relative crystallinity is a little different depend on the shaping method, which leads to the difference in moisture regain. The mechanical results show that tensile strength of the keratin membrane researches 3.5 MPa, have potential application in biomedical fields. However, the keratin fiber presents low tenacity, i.e. 0.5cN/dtex, this problem should be solved in order to apply the new fiber in textile and material science.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)614-621
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Biological Macromolecules
StatePublished - Aug 1 2016


  • Chicken feather
  • Keratin extraction
  • Keratin fiber
  • Keratin membrane

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Structural Biology
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Energy(all)


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