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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

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Research Project: PROTEIN PROCESSING USING HIGH-PRESSURE GASES AND SUPERCRITICAL FLUIDS

Location: Dairy and Functional Foods

Project Number: 1935-41000-077-00
Project Type: Appropriated

Start Date: Jun 04, 2009
End Date: May 23, 2010

Objective:
The objectives of this research are to: 1) develop new, cost effective technologies for processing protein fractions from NFDM into food and non-food products by utilizing concepts from physical chemistry, (2) develop new environmentally benign processes for dairy protein modification that utilize supercritical fluids as reaction media and solute carriers; and 3) develop new processes for producing enriched fractions of the whey and casein proteins to utilize surplus NFDM and whey.

Approach:
This research will focus on the means of developing new food and non-food uses for whey and casein, as well as nonfat dry milk (NFDM), through basic research and process development engineering. Specifically, new processing techniques for production of edible films from the milk proteins will be investigated to expand their utilization into new food and nonfood products. High pressure and supercritical carbon dioxide will be investigated as media for creating modified casein and whey proteins to increase the functionality of the proteins for food uses. A new environmentally benign process will be designed based on one that was developed in our laboratory for fractionation of whey proteins concentrate into two enriched fractions, alpha-lactalbumin (a-LA) and beta-lactoglobulin (B-LG). Process simulation will be incorporated into the study to guide process development for the most efficient production scheme. In addition, the possibility of producing a fully soluble form of a-LA and a form in the so-called molten-globule state will be investigated. This will ultimately expand the range of products that can be obtained from a single process thereby reducing the costs associated with whey protein concentrate. Finally, casein molecular models developed previously in our lab will be used to guide production of enriched fractions of the individual caseins.

Last Modified: 4/19/2014
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