Fractionated Wheat Straw Lignin and Its Application as Antioxidant

Pu Ma, Ya Gao, Huamin Zhai


Three kinds of wheat straw black liquor were extracted by alkaline solution at 25 °C, 100 °C, and 165 °C, and were precipitated by the stepwise addition of acid to pH 10.5, 9.0, and 2.0, respectively. The corresponding three lignin fractions were isolated. The characteristics of these lignin fractions were investigated, and their impacts on anti-oxidant properties were evaluated. The pH 10.5 fractions with low lignin content, low phenolic hydroxyl content, and high lignin molecular weight showed very poor radical scavenging ability. The pH 9.0 and 2.0 fractions with high phenolic hydroxyl contents exhibited excellent radical scavenging ability. The major portion of the degraded lignin was precipitated in the pH 2.0 fraction, resulting in a lower molecular weight and higher phenolic hydroxyl content as compared to the pH 10.5 and pH 9.0 fractions. The high extraction temperature degraded more lignin and generated more phenolic hydroxyl groups. Therefore, the lignin fractions extracted at 165 °C exhibited the best radical trapping potential as compared to the lignin extracted at 100 °C and 25 °C. The coefficients of DPPH• removal for the lignin fractions were ordered in sequence by phenolic hydroxyl content, methoxyl content, molecular weight, E+T content, and NO yield of lignin. The lignin fraction extracted at higher temperature and precipitated at lower pH had the best radical scavenging ability.


Wheat straw; Lignin; Phenolic hydroxyl group; Antioxidant; Radical scavenging

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