Nowadays, the growing appeal of leading a healthy lifestyle has made its way to consumers, which includes the intake of higher nutritional foods. However, one of the main drawbacks found by the food industry is related to the incorporation of hydrophobic bioactives in aqueous-based food formulations. In this context, liposomes have been increasingly investigated for food applications as potential carriers for hydrophobic bioactives. In this study, the coencapsulation of curcumin and vitamin D3 in liposomes is proposed. Curcumin presents itself as an alternative to artificial yellow dyes whose allergic reactions are heavily studied. On the other hand, vitamin D3 deficiency is a currently pandemic disease. Therefore, the coencapsulation of these two hydrophobic molecules in liposomes can be interesting as these lipid carriers present low toxicity and highly biocompatibility and biodegradability. As concerns the methods to produce liposomes, supercritical assisted techniques overcome several limitations found in conventional approaches as little reproducibility of the process, high solvent residues, and low encapsulation efficiencies. Besides, supercritical carbon dioxide (CO2) can be used during the production of vesicles due to its high diffusion coefficient, and can also act as a clean substitute for organic solvents.In addition, it is important to mention that there is a paucity of information on the production of liposomes using supercritical assisted techniques for food purposes. Therefore, the main objective of this project is to produce lyophilized liposomes containing curcumin and vitamin D3. For this, it is intended to stablish the best lyoprotectant and the useful mass ratio of lyoprotectant:phospholipid to preventdamages in liposomal phospholipid membrane caused by the formation of ice crystals. Furthermore, it is proposed to establish the best conditions for liposome production using the supercritical assisted method developed by the Supercritical Fluids Research Group (University of Salerno, Italy), named SuperLip, as well as toevaluate the ability of dispersed and lyophilized systems to protect the bioactives.
News published in Agência FAPESP Newsletter about the scholarship: