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Impact of pH on molecular structure and surface properties of lentil legumin-like protein and its application as foam stabilizer.

Colloids and surfaces. B, Biointerfaces (2015-05-26)
M Jarpa-Parra, F Bamdad, Z Tian, Hongbo Zeng, Feral Temelli, L Chen
ABSTRACT

The capacity of a protein to form and stabilize foams and emulsions depends on its structural characteristics and its physicochemical properties. The structural properties of lentil legumin-like protein including molecular weight, hydrodynamic size, surface charge and hydrophobicity, and conformation were studied in relation to its air-water interfacial behaviors. Kinetics study suggested that the foaming stability was closely related to the surface conformation of the protein that strongly affected adsorption and re-organization of the protein layer at the air-water interface. Foams prepared at neutral pH showed dense and strong networks at the interface, where combination of the α-helix secondary structure, medium hydrodynamic molecular size, and balance between solubility/hydrophobicity all contributed to the formation of such strong protein network at the interface. At pH 5.0, the protein formed a dense and thick network composed of randomly aggregated protein particles at the air-water interface. Whereas at pH 3.0, the unordered structure increased intra-protein flexibility producing a less compact and relaxed interface that reduces elasticity modulus with time and reduced foam resistance against collapse. This research revealed that lentil legumin-like protein could form long-life foams at mild acidic and neutral pH. The potential for use of lentil protein as a novel foaming plant-based stabilizer is demonstrated in food and non-food applications where stable, long-life foams are required.

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