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J Agric Food Chem. 2013 Jan 9;61(1):219-24. doi: 10.1021/jf3039692. Epub 2012 Dec 27.

Formation of ferric oxyhydroxide nanoparticles mediated by peptides in anchovy (Engraulis japonicus) muscle protein hydrolysate.

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  • 1College of Food Science and Engineering, Ocean University of China, Qingdao, Shandong Province 266003, China.


Nanosized iron fortificants appear to be promising and can be synthesized in a greener way using peptides as biotemplates. Anchovy is a huge underdeveloped source of muscle protein that enhances human nonheme iron absorption. This paper shows that peptides in anchovy ( Engraulis japonicus ) muscle protein hydrolysate (AMPH) mediate the formation of monodispersed ferric oxyhydroxide nanoparticles (FeONPs) with diameters of 20-40 nm above pH 3.0. Peptides in AMPH nucleate iron through carboxyl groups and crystal growth then occur as a result of condensation of carboxylate-ligated hydroxide iron centers, yielding Fe-O-Fe cross-link bonds. Monomers of FeONPs are formed after steric obstruction of further crystal growth by peptide backbones with certain lengths and further stabilized by surface-adsorbed peptides. The iron-loading capacity of peptides in AMPH is up to 27.5 mg iron/g peptide. Overall, the present study provides a greener alternative route to the synthesis of FeONPs.

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