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J Agric Food Chem. 2016 Jun 22;64(24):5053-9. doi: 10.1021/acs.jafc.6b01176. Epub 2016 Jun 7.

Core-Shell Soy Protein-Soy Polysaccharide Complex (Nano)particles as Carriers for Improved Stability and Sustained Release of Curcumin.

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Department of Food Science and Engineering, Jinan University , Guangzhou, Guangdong 510632, People's Republic of China.


Using soy protein isolate (SPI) and soy-soluble polysaccharides (SSPS) as polymer matrixes, this study reported a novel process to fabricate unique core-shell complex (nano)particles to perform as carriers for curcumin (a typical poorly soluble bioactive). In the process, curcumin-SPI nanocomplexes were first formed at pH 7.0 and then coated by SSPS. At this pH, the core-shell complex was formed in a way the SPI nanoparticles might be incorporated into the interior of SSPS molecules without distinctly affecting the size and morphology of particles. The core-shell structure was distinctly changed by adjusting pH from 7.0 to 4.0. At pH 4.0, SSPS was strongly bound to the surface of highly aggregated SPI nanoparticles, and as a consequence, much larger complexes were formed. The bioaccessibility of curcumin in the SPI-curcumin complexes was unaffected by the SSPS coating. However, the core-shell complex formation greatly improved the thermal stability and controlled release properties of encapsulated curcumin. The improvement was much better at pH 4.0 than that at pH 7.0. All of the freeze-dried core-shell complex preparations exhibited good redispersion behavior. The findings provide a simple approach to fabricate food-grade delivery systems for improved water dispersion, heat stability, and even controlled release of poorly soluble bioactives.


carrier; core−shell particles; curcumin; soy polysaccharide; soy protein

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