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ARS Home » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #235034

Title: New bioactive and biobased product applications of pectin

item Hotchkiss, Arland
item Liu, Linshu
item Fishman, Marshall

Submitted to: Book Chapter
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: 6/15/2009
Publication Date: 7/1/2009
Citation: Hotchkiss, A.T., Rastall, R., Gibson, G., Eliaz, I., Liu, L.S., Fishman, M. 2009. New bioactive and biobased product applications of pectin. Book Chapter In: Schols, H.A., Visser, R.G.F., Voragen, A.G.J., editors. Pectins and Pectinases. Wageningen, The Netherlands: Wageningen Academic Publisher. p. 305-312.

Interpretive Summary: The enormous volume of agricultural processing residues, such as orange peels and sugar beet pulp, represents an underutilized domestic resource of valuable functional carbohydrates. These residues have been used as cattle feed ingredients, but as such their value is low (under $0.05/pound) and there is more supply than demand for cattle feed. However, these residues are rich in valuable functional carbohydrates such as pectin. Pectin is a plant carbohydrate traditionally used in jam and jelly production. Pectin and pectic fractions also have bioactive health-promoting properties and can be used in biobased products. We review these new applications for pectin and document the knowledge gaps that exist for commercialization. This information will benefit consumers, agricultural processors and growers of pectin-rich commodities.

Technical Abstract: Pectin is well known for its bioactive health-promoting properties and use in biobased products. Recent reports have demonstrated that pectin and pectic fractions have potential as prebiotics, prevent pathogenic bacterial adhesion, increase prostate specific antigen doubling time in patients with recurrent prostate cancer, induce apoptosis in prostate and colon cancer cells, and systemically chelate heavy metals which are eliminated by urinary excretion. New biobased product applications include bioplastics and films derived from pectin or pectin-rich aricultural residues such as sugar beet pulp. Pectin has also been used in scaffolds for bone and connective tissue repair and controlled-release matrices for colon-specific drug delivery. While the biobased product applications of pectin require high molecular weight, the new bioactive properties of pectin are enhanced or only observed following reduction of the polysaccharide’s molecular weight.