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J Agric Food Chem. 2002 Oct 23;50(22):6440-7.

Computerized apparatus for measuring dynamic flavor release from liquid food matrices.

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Institut für Lebensmittelchemie im Zentrum Angewandte Chemie der Universität Hannover, Wunstorfer Strasse 14, D-30453 Hannover, Germany.


A fully computer-controlled apparatus was designed. It combines a glass reactor with a temperature-controlled hood, in which headspace volatiles are captured. Flavored liquids can be introduced into the reactor and exposed to conditions of temperature, air flow, shear rate, and saliva flow as they occur in the mouth. As the reactor is completely filled before measurements are started, creation of headspace just before sampling start prevents untimely flavor release resulting in real time data. In the first 30 s of flavor release the concentrations of the volatiles can be measured up to four times by on-line sampling of the dynamic headspace, followed by off-line trapping of the samples on corresponding Tenax traps and analysis using GC-TDS-FID. Flavor compounds from different chemical classes were dissolved in water to achieve concentrations typically present in food (micrograms to milligrams per liter). Most of the compounds showed constant release rates, and the summed quantities of each volatile of three 10 s time intervals correlated linearly with time. The entire method of measurement including sample preparation, release, sampling, trapping, thermodesorption, and GC analysis showed good sensitivity [nanograms (10 s)(-1)] and reproducibility (mean coefficient of variation = 7.2%).

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