Lignin-carbohydrate Complexes from Coconut (Cocos nucifera) Coir: Fractionation, Structural Elucidation, and Potential Applications

Qi Zhou, Zhiqiang Ou, Xin Rao, Yi Liu, Chen Liang, Liming Zhang, Chunqing Huo, Xueyu Du


Coconut coir, a major type of tropical lignocellulosic waste, has been restricted from higher-value applications due to its chemical complexity and inherent variability. To better disclose the chemical relationships between polysaccharides and lignin in coir and further exploit its high value-added bio-based materials, two lignin-carbohydrate complexes (LCCs) designated as glucan-lignin (GL) and xylan-lignin (XL) were successively isolated from coir via a simplified and quantitative fractionation method. The characterization of chemical composition, molecular weight distribution, and constituent substructures of the isolated LCC fractions were examined, and the lignin-carbohydrate (LC) chemical linkages were revealed as γ-esters by a 2D heteronuclear singular quantum correlation (HSQC) NMR technique. Furthermore, XL was demonstrated as a more competitive candidate than GL for 2,2-diphenyl-1-picryl-hydrazyl (DPPH) removal in comparison with 2,6-di-tert-butyl-4-methylphenol (BHT, a commercial antioxidant), and was also featured as a more promising reinforcing agent for elevating the adsorption property of polyacrylamide-based hydrogels via the synergistic effect of physical and hydrogen bonding adsorptions.


Coconut coir; Lignin-carbohydrate complex (LCC); Fractionation; Radical scavenging; Adsorption property

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Welcome to BioResources! This online, peer-reviewed journal is devoted to the science and engineering of biomaterials and chemicals from lignocellulosic sources for new end uses and new capabilities. The editors of BioResources would be very happy to assist you during the process of submitting or reviewing articles. Please note that logging in is required in order to submit or review articles. Martin A. Hubbe, (919) 513-3022,; Lucian A. Lucia, (919) 515-7707, URLs:; ISSN: 1930-2126