The design of protein particles with tailored properties has received an increased attention recently. Several approaches, from simple heat treatment in dilute systems to the combination of heat and mechanical treatments in concentrated protein solutions, have been used to obtain protein particles with varying functional properties. Control of particle size, morphology, surface- and internal properties is crucial for obtaining protein particles with the necessary properties for emerging applications. The latter include not only the use of protein particles in foods, where they can improve the stability of foods at high protein content, but also as food-grade particles for the delivery of bio-actives. By tuning the morphology and size of protein particles, protection or controlled release of various bio-active components may be obtained. We review the various methods that have been used to prepare protein particles and discuss the behavior of the particles in dispersed systems and their possible applications.
- microparticulated whey proteins
- gelatin/maltodextrin mixtures
- polysaccharide complexes
- rheological properties
- biopolymer particles
- controlled delivery