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Mexico: Researchers encapsulate health-giving substance from broccoli

Zoom in font  Zoom out font Published: 2017-07-25  Views: 34
Core Tip: Scientists from the Technological Institute of Sonora (ITSON) have developed a Micro-encapsulation process to preserve and maintain sulforaphane (a substance contained by broccoli, Brussels sprouts, purple cabbage and radish, and that has anticancer, anti
Scientists from the Technological Institute of Sonora (ITSON) have developed a Micro-encapsulation process to preserve and maintain sulforaphane (a substance contained by broccoli, Brussels sprouts, purple cabbage and radish, and that has anticancer, antioxidant, antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties) stable under ambient conditions.

Biotechnologist engineer, Jesus Garcia Saldaña, said broccoli is rich in sulforaphane and its consumption is presumed to lower the risk of cancer. However, it is very sensitive to changes in temperature, which is why his team is working to create suitable polymer materials that help increase the shelf life of sulforaphane when isolated from the vegetable.

"Our research process starts with the isolation of the compound, then we perform the micro-encapsulation; that is, we trap it within a small sphere that provides a physical barrier that protects it from the direct environment. Then we isolate it and purify it. The process we use is based on the formation and separation of particles in an aqueous medium."

After ten years of study, the compound is still in the laboratory stage. The Sonoran scientists will evaluate the release of the compound from the particles and they will standardize the concentrations to obtain a final product and test its effectiveness in some food coatings.

The study called "Sulforaphane micro-encapsulation through complex coacervation" was the winner of the Student Science and Food Technology category of the National Science and Technology Award (PNCTA) 2016. "It's a recognition that motivates us; being rewarded for what you do is always great," stated Jesus Garcia.
 
keywords: broccoli
 
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