FOOD SCIENCE ›› 2020, Vol. 41 ›› Issue (9): 323-331.doi: 10.7506/spkx1002-6630-20190411-153

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Progress in Preparation Methods, Structural Characterization and Functional Properties of Zein-Polysaccharide Nanocomposites

SUN Cuixia, SONG Jingru, FANG Yapeng   

  1. (School of Agriculture and Biology, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai 200240, China)
  • Online:2020-05-15 Published:2020-05-15

Abstract: As a natural plant protein extracted from corn gluten meal, zein is non-allergenic protein, and has unique self-assembly characteristics and good biocompatibility. It is generally recognized as safe food-grade ingredient. Based on the solubility of zein in different solvents, a variety of methods have been developed to fabricate zein nanoparticles. Such particles are widely used as delivery vehicles for bioactive compounds and as particulate stabilizers for emulsions. Nanocomposites of zein and polysaccharides formed by electrostatic, hydrophobic and hydrogen bonding can synergistically enhance emulsion stability, which will increase encapsulation efficiency, loading capacity and bioavailability of bioactive compounds. In the current article, we review the different methods used to prepare zein-polysaccharide nanocomposites, the techniques for their structural characterization, the factors affecting particle properties, and their functional properties. The aim is to provide a theoretical basis for the development of new fabrication methods for zein-based nanocomposites, and at the same time, offer technical support for the application of zein-polysaccharide nanocomposites in the food industry.

Key words: zein, nanocomposites, preparation methods, structural characterization, functional properties

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