The interest in efficient intestinal delivery of health-promoting substances is increasing. However, the delivery of vulnerable substances such as enzymes requires specific attention. The transit through the stomach, where the pH is very low, can be detrimental to the enzymatic activity of the protein to be delivered. Here, we describe the microencapsulation of the model enzyme bile salt hydrolase (Bsh) using whey protein-gum arabic microencapsulates for food-grade and targeted enzyme delivery in the proximal region of the small intestine. Furthermore, the efficacy of enteric coating microencapsulates for site-specific enzyme delivery was compared in vitro with living Lactobacillus plantarum WCFS1 bacteria that endogenously produce the Bsh enzyme. Microencapsulates allowed highly effective protection of the enzyme under gastric conditions. Moreover, Bsh release under intestinal conditions appeared to be very efficient, although in the presence of pancreatin, the Bsh activity decreased in time due to proteolytic degradation. In comparison, L. plantarum appeared to be capable to withstand gastric conditions as well as pancreatin challenge. Delivery using encapsulates and live bacteria each have different (dis)advantages that are discussed. In conclusion, live bacteria and food-grade microencapsulates provide alternatives for dedicated enteric delivery of specific enzymes, and the choice of enzyme to be delivered may determine which mode of delivery is most suitable.
- release properties
- expression system