Various different agri-food biomasses might be turned into renewable sources for producing biodegradable and edible plastics, potentially attractive for food, agricultural and cosmeceutical sectors. In this regard, different seeds utilized for edible and non-edible oil extraction give rise to high amounts of organic by-products, known as seed oil cakes (SOCs), potentially able to become protein-rich resources useful for the manufacturing of biodegradable films. This study reports the potential of SOC derived from Argania spinosa (argan), a well-known plant containing valuable non-refined oil suitable for food or cosmetic use, to be a promising valuable source for production of a protein-based matrix of biomaterials to be used in the pharmaco-cosmetic sector. Thus, glycerol-plasticized films were prepared by casting and drying using different amounts of argan seed protein concentrate, in the presence of increasing glycerol concentrations, and characterized for their morphological, mechanical, barrier, and hydrophilicity properties. In addition, their antioxidant activity and effects on cell viability and wound healing were investigated. The hydrophobic nature of the argan protein-based films, and their satisfying physicochemical and biological properties, suggest a biorefinery approach for the recycling of argan SOC as valuable raw material for manufacturing new products to be used in the cosmeceutical and food industries.
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