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ARS Home » Northeast Area » Wyndmoor, Pennsylvania » Eastern Regional Research Center » Dairy and Functional Foods Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #334749

Title: Innovative application of metal-organic frameworks for encapsulation and controlled release of allyl isothiocyanate

item LASHKARI, ELHAM - Rutgers University
item WANG, HAO - Rutgers University
item Liu, Linshu
item LI, JING - Rutgers University
item YAM, KIT - Rutgers University

Submitted to: Food Chemistry
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 9/26/2016
Publication Date: 11/17/2016
Citation: Lashkari, E., Wang, H., Liu, L.S., Li, J., Yam, K. 2016. Innovative application of metal-organic frameworks for encapsulation and controlled release of allyl isothiocyanate. Food Chemistry. 221:926-935.

Interpretive Summary: Allyl isothiocyanate (AITC) is a naturally occurring antioxidant and has a long history of safe use in food preservation and food protection. The volatile nature of AITC has demonstrated advantages that other antioxidants do not have, such as that it has potential to be used for food packaging by releasing AITC to the surfaces of packed foods to suppress or inhibit bacterial growth. However, its volatile nature also makes it difficult to store and handle. We evaluated the capability of three different molecules called Metal-Organic Frameworks (MOFs) as carriers for the encapsulation and controlled release of AITC. It was found that at room temperature, AITC could be absorbed by the MOFs at relative humidity (RH) lower than 35%, and could be released at RH from 95 to 100%, indicating that water vapor could be used as a trigger to control the concentration of AITC in the headspace of food packaging. This research demonstrated the feasibility of using MOFs with AITC as a novel food preservative reagent for the food packaging industry.

Technical Abstract: This research investigated the technical feasibility of metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) as novel delivery systems for encapsulation and controlled release of volatile allyl isothiocyanate (AITC) molecules. We hypothesized that water vapor molecules could act as an external stimulus to trigger the release of AITC molecules encapsulated in MOFs. To test this hypothesis, three MOFs—HKUST-1, MOF-74(Zn), and RPM6-Zn—were selected based on their structural properties and AITC molecular characteristics. Results from adsorption-desorption and GC headspace analyses showed that these MOFs could encapsulate and retain AITC molecules within their pores under low (30–35%) relative humidity (RH) conditions. In contrast, the release of AITC molecules from all these MOFs was triggered under high RH (95–100%) conditions. These findings along with results from SEM, TEM, and XRPD studies support our hypothesis that water vapors could trigger AITC release from these MOFs, indicating that development of the AITC-MOFs delivery system is technically feasible and could be used for food packaging.