Many food products are emulsions, i.e., they contain small droplets. Emulsification is a process in which two immiscible liquids are dispersed into each other, and emulsifiers are needed to prevent the droplets from merging again. The droplets can cause instability in food products through both physical (e.g., merging of droplets) and chemical effects (e.g., oxidation of unsaturated fatty acids). Although the literature is full of papers on lipid oxidation, also for emulsions, the actual mechanisms as they occur in emulsions are not well understood. It has been suggested that the interface plays a determining role in initiation of the oxidation reaction, and this is also highly likely the case, but this has not been connected to the formation of oxidation products in a consistent way. This in itself is not that surprising since various effects may take place at the same time such as radical scavenging, radical initiation by metals, just to name a few. Within my PhD project I will very systematically investigate the role of the interface on lipid oxidation, by variation of droplet size, and concentration of various components (proteins, metals in combination with a chelating system). I will monitor primary and secondary oxidation products, and ideally also oxygen concentration, and use modelling tools to analyze the underlying mechanisms, and thus contribute to food product design that is inherently leading to longer shelf life.
|Effective start/end date||13/12/21 → …|
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