Abstract:The objective of this study is to explore the cause(s) of changes in the hydrodynamic volume of chitosan molecules in solutions of different organic acids, at different temperatures and ionic strengths. Change in intrinsic viscosity is used as the parameter to elucidate the causes of changes in the hydrodynamic volume of chitosan molecules in these solutions. Results show that the intrinsic viscosity of chitosan decreases in acetic acid or in malic acid over storage time. These decreases are more pronounced in acetic acid solution than in malic acid solution, more significant in higher temperature than in lower temperature solutions, and greater in solutions without NaCl than in solutions containing higher NaCl. The decrease in intrinsic viscosity can perhaps be attributed to the compounded effects of compaction of the chitosan molecules and/or acidic degradation during storage.