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Development and optimization of the ethanol injection method for production of liposomes encapsulating beta-carotene and its applications in the food industry

Grant number: 12/02586-0
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Master
Effective date (Start): June 01, 2012
Effective date (End): February 28, 2013
Field of knowledge:Engineering - Chemical Engineering
Principal Investigator:Lucimara Gaziola de la Torre
Grantee:Rafael Henrique de Freitas Zômpero
Host Institution: Faculdade de Engenharia Química (FEQ). Universidade Estadual de Campinas (UNICAMP). Campinas , SP, Brazil
Associated scholarship(s):12/12245-5 - Incorporation of beta-carotene loaded liposomes in zein nanofibers produced by electrospinning, BE.EP.MS


This project aims the technological development of a scalable liposome production process, using the modified ethanol injection method for applications in the food industry, by incorporating beta-carotene into these nanoaggregates. The beta-carotene is a natural antioxidant, pro-vitaminic and it can be used as a natural colorant in food formulations. However, its high hidrofobicity difficults the application in water based foods. The development of processes that are feasible to be implemented in the food indutry focusing the encapsulation of beta-carotene in liposomes is an actual challenge. The ethanol injection method has been recently modified for the production of cationic liposomes aiming the vehiculation of DNA vaccines. It consists of the injection of high concentration alcoholic dispersions in a reactor containing the aqueous phase and it is being investigated by the research group coordinated by the responsible for this project. Hydrogenated soy phosphatidylcholine will be used for the production of the liposomes. In the first step, the ethanol injection method will be investigated, aiming the optimization of the operational parameters for the production of nanoaggregates with controled size and polydispersity. The investigated paremeters will be (i) type of stirrer (TURRAX or Caules), (ii) lipid concentration in the alcoholic phase, (iii) reactor temperature and (iv) alcoholic dispersions (containing the lipid) flow rate. Subsequently, the beta-carotene incorporation will be evaluated during or after the liposomes formation. This liposomes will be characterized for their mean hydrodynamic diameter, zeta potential, polydispersity, morfology, bilayer fluidity and structural analysis using small angle X ray scattering technique (SAXS). These liposomes will also be evaluated in a standard food matrix, that will be carried out in partnership with the Faculdade de Zootecnia e Engenharia de Alimentos (FZEA). In addition, these liposomes containing beta-carotene will be incorporated in zein nanofibers, via international colaboration with the Instituto de Agroquímica y Tecnologia de Alimentos in Valencia, Spain, in which the electrospinning technique is already being studied. Thus it is expected that this work will contribute to the development of new processes and new materials to be used in the food sector.

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Academic Publications
(References retrieved automatically from State of São Paulo Research Institutions)
ZÔMPERO, Rafael Henrique de Freitas. Development and optimization of the ethanol injection method for production of liposomes encapsulating 'beta¿-carotene and its applications in the food industry. 2013. Master's Dissertation - Universidade Estadual de Campinas (UNICAMP). Faculdade de Engenharia Química Campinas, SP.

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