Texture contrast: Ultrasonic characterization of stacked gels’ deformation during compression on a biomimicking tongue: Ultrasonic evaluation of staked gels

Rohit Srivastava, Markus Stieger, Elke Scholten, Isabelle Souchon, Vincent Mathieu*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

When undergoing compression during oral processing, stacked gels display different mechanical properties that shape perceptions of texture contrasts (Santagiuliana et al., 2018). However, to date, characterizing the mechanical responses of individual gel layers has been impossible. In this study, an ultrasound (US) technique was developed, that allowed such deformation dynamics to be visualized in real time. Stacked gels were created using layers (height: 5 mm) of brittle agar and elastic gelatin in different combinations. In a series of experimental tests, different stacked gel combinations were placed on a rough, deformable artificial tongue model (ATM) made of polyvinyl alcohol; a texture analyzer was used to apply uniaxial force, and deformation was monitored by an US transducer (5 MHz) located under the ATM. From the obtained results, it was observed that the deformation of ATM surface during compression was in accordance with the force recorded by the texture analyzer, suggesting a collaborative response of different layers under compression. Moreover, US imaging revealed that differences in Young's modulus values between layers led to heterogeneous strain distributions, which were more pronounced for the agar layers. Biopolymer elasticity was also a key factor. Regardless of combination type, the gelatin layers never fractured; such was not the case for the agar layers, especially those with lower Young's modulus values. The results of this US study have thus paved the way for a better understanding of the mechanical deformation that occurs in heterogeneous foods, a phenomenon that has been difficult to examine because of the limitations of conventional techniques.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)449-459
Number of pages11
JournalCurrent Research in Food Science
Volume4
Early online date3 Jul 2021
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2021

Keywords

  • Artificial tongue models
  • Composite food gels
  • Food texture
  • Oral processing
  • Ultrasound

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