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ARS Home » Plains Area » Fargo, North Dakota » Edward T. Schafer Agricultural Research Center » Sugarbeet and Potato Research » Research » Research Project #436535

Research Project: Tailoring Processing Strategies to Produce the New Generation of Chickpea Proteins and Prebiotic Oligosaccharides

Location: Sugarbeet and Potato Research

Project Number: 3060-21650-001-014-S
Project Type: Non-Assistance Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: Sep 1, 2019
End Date: Mar 31, 2023

Objectives for the life of the project will be to: (1) Produce chickpea protein concentrates with increased protein content and functionality, and diverse oligosaccharide composition through the use of the aqueous (AEP) and enzyme-assisted aqueous extraction process (EAEP); (2) Convert chickpea hulls and the insoluble fiber generated by the AEP/EAEP of chickpea flour (byproduct) into prebiotic oligosaccharides using a modified Fenton reaction; and (3) Evaluate prebiotic and anti-infective actions of the skim fractions (proteins/peptides + carbohydrates) produced during the AEP/EAEP processing, and of the bioactive oligosaccharides produced by the conversion of chickpea hulls and insoluble fraction.

The ultimate goal of this project is to use advanced mass spectrometry techniques to develop a bio-guided extraction process to produce chickpea protein concentrates (proteins + carbohydrates) with improved functionality (better digestibility and solubility and reduced flatulence), and to convert chickpea processing byproducts (fiber and hulls) into selective prebiotic oligosaccharides. The use of advanced mass spectrometry will enable identification and quantification of the new bioactive oligosaccharides formed by two processing strategies (enzymatic and chemical conversion) as well as characterization of more soluble and digestible proteins/peptides resulting from the enzyme-assisted aqueous extraction process. We will accomplish this goal through the development of a green extraction strategy that relies on the use of mechanical treatments, water, and target enzymes to improve overall extractability and functionality of oil, protein, and carbohydrates from chickpea flour and through the use of a Fenton-based reaction that can convert chickpea hulls and insoluble fiber into prebiotic oligosaccharides. Along with the functional aspects of extracted proteins and carbohydrates (digestibility, solubility, reduced flatulence), evaluation of the prebiotic and anti-infective properties of the fractions generated by enzymatic and chemical processes will be used as the major benchmark for the selection of the best processing conditions to produce healthier and more functional chickpea ingredients.