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ARS Home » Midwest Area » Peoria, Illinois » National Center for Agricultural Utilization Research » Plant Polymer Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #228468


item Selling, Gordon

Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 7/10/2008
Publication Date: 7/18/2008
Citation: Selling, G.W. 2008. IMPROVED ISOLATION AND UTILIZATION OF ZEIN. Meeting Abstract. xx.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Zein is the main protein present in corn and is potentially a large co-product of the bio-ethanol industry. At present this material is under utilized. In order for zein to be used in new markets not only must the properties of the zein based article meet the needs of this market, but there must also be a ready supply of zein suitably priced to make the new venture profitable. To that end, we have explored the use of acetic acid to remove zein from corn gluten meal. Acetic acid removes zein from these sources faster and at lower temperatures when compared with those procedures described in either the open literature or the patent literature. We have been able to electrospin (a type of dry spinning) zein producing micron size fibers suitable for making non-woven fabrics. We have also found that glyoxal is capable of producing zein articles and that have improved physical properties and are resistant to dissolution in various solvents. This chemistry can be carried out in a melt process in either a batch or continuous mode. The articles produced using melt processes may be suitable for use in many traditional petroleum based products. Results from this bench top lab work will be helpful in developing new zein isolation methods and zein based products that will improve the economics of the bio-ethanol industry.