Molecular assembly, interfacial rheology and foaming properties of oligofructose fatty acid esters

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Two major types of food-grade surfactants used to stabilize foams are proteins and low molecular weight (LMW) surfactants. Proteins lower the surface tension of interfaces and tend to unfold and stabilize the interface by the formation of a visco-elastic network, which leads to high surface moduli. In contrast, LMW surfactants lower the surface tension more than proteins, but do not form interfaces with a high modulus. Instead, they stabilize the interface through the Gibbs-Marangoni mechanism that relies on rapid diffusion of surfactants, when surface tension gradients develop as a result of deformations of the interface. A molecule than can lower the surface tension considerably, like a LMW surfactant, but also provide the interface with a high modulus, like a protein, would be an excellent foam stabilizer. In this article we will discuss molecules with those properties: oligofructose fatty acid esters, both in pure and mixed systems. First, we will address the synthesis and structural characterization of the esters. Next, we will address self-assembly and rheological properties of air/water interfaces stabilized by the esters. Subsequently, this paper will deal with mixed systems of mono-esters with either di-esters and lauric acid, or proteins. Then, the foaming functionality of the esters is discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)111-122
JournalFood & Function
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2014


  • lipase-catalyzed synthesis
  • surface-active properties
  • solid-phase synthesis
  • air-water-interface
  • enzymatic-synthesis
  • beta-lactoglobulin
  • chain-length
  • sugar esters
  • dilatational rheology
  • candida-antarctica


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