Protein secrets underpin food design rules
The Food Futures Flagship is part of a group that has characterised proteins critical for replacing food processing’s ‘trial and error’ approach with design rules built on sound science.
6 February 2007 | Updated 14 October 2011
Soy protein characterised
A team including CSIRO researchers has structurally characterised and developed the first state diagram for the soy protein glycinin and lysozyme (a protein found in egg whites) at low moistures.
A state diagram describes how the properties of a substance changes in response to changing conditions.
The team looked at how moisture affected glycinin's:
glass transition temperature (the temperature where glycinin goes from being rigid and brittle to soft and elastic).
These results are an important step towards creating a set of ‘design rules’ for creating new foods.
These results are an important step towards creating a set of 'design rules' for creating new foods.
These rules would allow food and ingredient manufacturers to select proteins and optimise processes to develop high quality, nutritious foods.
They would be particularly useful in improving the processing of dried and semi-dried foods and ingredients for the food and pharmaceutical industries.
Proteins are a key source of nutrition in food. They control texture and ‘mouthfeel’– the way the food feels in your mouth – and help stabilise oil drops.
Little is known about the molecular properties that govern these important attributes and the way they behave in dried and semi-dried foods, such as breakfast cereals and snacks.
This has traditionally led food manufacturers to use a trial and error approach in new product and ingredient development to achieve the right:
Who was involved
The discovery is part of an ongoing collaborative effort that aims to increase our understanding of protein behaviour at the molecular level and control food ingredients in new product development.
This collaboration brought together:
Find out more about our work with Designed food and ingredients overview.