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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Related Topics


Location: Dairy and Functional Foods Research

2011 Annual Report

1a. Objectives (from AD-416)
1. Develop plant cell wall polysaccharide-based bioplastic composites with tailor-designed thermal, mechanical and biological properties for active packaging, construction and automotive materials. 2. Convert plant cell wall polysaccharides into biomedical materials for tissue regeneration, cosmetic personal care products, carriers of bioactive substances for the colon-specific delivery and to produce synbiotics (probiotic + prebiotic). 2a. Develop regeneration medicine and drug delivery biomedical products 2b. Develop skin-care biomedical products 3. Develop plant cell wall oligosaccharide-based prebiotics from agricultural processing residues rich in pectins and hemicelluloses and test the hypothesis that prebiotics can selectively promote the growth of gut bacteria associated with lean tissue growth to potentially control obesity. 3a. Conduct in vivo analysis of candidate prebiotics 3b. Discover new pectic and hemicellulosic prebiotics 3c. Determine if prebiotics can alter the colonic microflora to potentially control obesity 4. Screen plant cell wall oligosaccharides for biological activity (anti-adhesion of pathogenic bacteria, immunomodulation, induction of apoptosis).

1b. Approach (from AD-416)
A multidisciplinary biorefinery approach will be used to develop health-related and biobased co-products from plant cell wall polysaccharides in fruit and vegetable processing residues. Plant cell wall polysaccharides will be converted into biomedical materials for human tissue regeneration, cosmetic personal care products, carriers of bioactive substances for colon-specific delivery and to produce synbiotics, in which probiotic bacteria are encapsulated in a prebiotic. Plant cell wall oligosaccharide-based prebiotics will be isolated from agricultural processing residues rich in pectins and hemicelluloses. The hypothesis that prebiotics can selectively promote the growth of gut bacteria associated with lean tissue growth to potentially control obesity will be tested. Plant cell wall oligosaccharides will also be screened for biological activity such as preventing the adhesion of pathogenic bacteria to intestinal epithelial cells, immunomodulation, and induction of cancer cell apoptosis. Bioplastic composites will be designed with bacteriocins for control of food-borne pathogens with active packaging. Weight-bearing, light weight bioplastic composites will also be produced with construction and consumer product applications in mind.

3. Progress Report
Research on the synthesis and characterization of active packaging materials continued consistent with the NP 306 Action Plan, 3B Develop Biobased Products and Sustainable Technologies/Processes and Project Plan Objectives 1 and 2. Two antibiotics, AIT (a wasabi extract) and Nisaplin®, were loaded on the surfaces of two completely green materials, poly(lactic acid) and sugar beet pulp (PLA/SBP, 50/50) and poly(butylene adipate-co-terepthalate) and sugar beet pulp, (PBAT/SBP, 50/50). The resulting biodegradable, bioplastic composites showed excellent biological activity in suppressing the growth of Salmonella and Listeria. A manuscript is in preparation. Preparation of devices for tissue regeneration and drug delivery continued. Three dimensional porous devices from mixtures of pectin and hyaluronate were prepared by the scientists in the Chemistry Institute of Tajikistan Academy of Sciences. These devices will be evaluated for the effect on wound healing in rats, using a commercial bioactive as a control. Research on novel prebiotic oligosaccharides as potential functional food/feed ingredients continued consistent with the NP 306 Action Plan,1.C New Bioactive Ingredients and Functional Foods and Project Plan Objectives 2-4. Semi-commercial citrus pectic oligosaccharides were used for synbiotics and evaluated as anti-adhesive oligosaccharides to prevent food pathogen binding to gut epithelial cells. Xyloglucan oligosaccharides from cranberry with anti-adhesive activity were further characterized. Collaboration with a CRADA partner demonstrated that pectic oligosaccharides have immunostimulatory activity. Methods for enzymatic production of arabinose-rich pectic oligosaccharides are under investigation using novel enzymes obtained from the Technical University of Denmark. See the subordinate project 1935-41000-06B-04T annual report for further details.

4. Accomplishments
1. Developed bioplastics from sugar beets. The sugar industry is under stress today because of the link between childhood obesity and sweet snacks and beverages. Sugar crop demand may suffer unless valuable co-products are developed. ARS scientists at Wyndmoor, PA produced a series of valuable co-products from sugar beets. A bioplastic composite was produced from polylactic acid and sugar beet pulp, the material remaining following sugar extraction. Sugar beet pectin was produced by a novel pilot plant-scale flash-extraction method. The protein component of sugar beet pectin was identified that confers emulsifier properties. Arabinose-rich oligosaccharides were identified with prebiotic properties. These co-products are currently under commercial evaluation as green sustainable plastic packaging materials and functional food ingredients. Products such as these will diversify the sugar beet industry providing a hedge against decreased demand for sugar.

2. Improved food security in Tajikistan. Central Asian countries have struggled economically during the past 20 years following the fall of the Iron Curtain. Many former Soviet biological weapon scientists in this region were unemployed. With funding from the U.S. State Department, ARS scientists at Wyndmoor, PA developed a new native plant-based food gum and controlled-delivery research program that will benefit the local economy in Tajikistan, making this country more self-reliant. This program employed 12 former Soviet scientists in research with a peaceful outcome and thus effectively coordinated with anti-terrorist efforts. ARS scientists received merit awards from the Tajikistan Academy of Sciences and $l million funding from the Tajikistan government was awarded to Tajik scientists to continue this research.

Review Publications
Hotchkiss, A.T., Fishman, M., Liu, L.S. 2010. The role of sugar beet pulp polysaccharides in the sustainability of the sugar beet industry. In: Eggleston, G., editor. Sustainability of the Sugar and Sugar-ethanol Industries. American Chemical Society Symposium Series. Washington, DC: American Chemical Society. 1058:283-290.

Ganan, M., Collins, M., Rastall, R., Hotchkiss, A.T., Chau, H.K., Carrascosa, A.V., Martinez-Rodreguez, A.J. 2010. Inhibition by pectic oligosaccharides of the invasion of undifferentiated and differentiated Caco-2 cells by Campylobacter jejuni. International Journal of Food Microbiology. 137:181-185.

Fishman, M., Cooke, P.H., Hotchkiss, A.T. 2010. Extraction and characterization of sugar beet polysaccharides. In: Cheng, H., et al, editors. Green Polymer Chemistry: Biocatalysis and Biomaterials. Washington, DC: ACS Symposium Series, American Chemical Society. 1043:71-86.

Fishman, M., Chau, H.K., Coffin, D.R., Cooke, P.H., Qi, P.X., Yadav, M.P., Hotchkiss, A.T. 2011. Physico-chemical characterization of a cellulosic fraction from sugar beet pulp. Cellulose. 18(3):787-801.

Muhidinov, Z.K., Kasimova, G.F., Bobokalonov, J.T., Khalikov, D.K., Teshaev, K.I., Khalikova, M.D., Liu, L.S. 2010. Pectin/zein microspheres as a sustained drug delivery system. Journal of Chemical and Pharmaceutical Research. 44(9):20-24.

Last Modified: 07/27/2017
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