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Bioactive Films and Hydrogels Based on Potato Starch and Phenolic Acids using Subcritical Water Technology Open Access


Other title
Bioactive film
Phenolic acid
Potato starch
Subcritical water
Type of item
Degree grantor
University of Alberta
Author or creator
Supervisor and department
Saldaña, Marleny D.A. (Department of Agriculture, Food and Nutritional Science)
Examining committee member and department
Vasanthan,Thava (Department of Agriculture, Food and Nutritional Science)
Guigard, Selma (Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering)
Department of Agricultural, Food, and Nutritional Science
Bioresource and Food Engineering
Date accepted
Graduation date
Master of Science
Degree level
Biodegradable polymers as an eco-friendly alternative to traditional plastics have raised increasing attention by the packaging industry, especially for food and pharmaceutical applications. Phenolic acids found in many plants exert antioxidant and antimicrobial activity, which are considered beneficial to human health. In this study, a new approach based on subcritical water (SCW) technology has been developed, which allowed the modification and production of potato starch polymers with the use of gallic acid. First, solubility behavior of gallic acid, 4-hydroxybeozic acid and 3-(4-hydroxyphenyl)-propionic acid in subcritical water was determined at different pressures and temperatures using a dynamic system. The solubility of these phenolic acids in water increased with temperature. Then, gallic acid was used to produce bioactive films and hydrogels using SCW technology. Four processing parameters, gallic acid/starch ratio, temperature, glycerol/starch ratio and pressure, were evaluated based on film structural, optical, mechanical, and functional properties. Optimum film in terms of mechanical properties was achieved using 40 mg gallic acid/g starch and 0.5 g glycerol/g starch with 5% potato starch solution at 100 °C and 30 bar. Starch bioactive hydrogels were also produced and characterized in terms of structural, physicochemical and functional properties (swelling degree, and phenolic releasing capacity). The optimum hydrogel in terms of porosity and swelling degree was found. Films produced can be potentially used as functional food packaging materials or carriers for bioactive compounds. The starch based hydrogel can also be used as an absorbent for food and non-food application.
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