Aqueous biphasic systems in the separation of food colorants


Aqueous biphasic systems (ABS) composed of polypropylene glycol and carbohydrates, two benign substances are proposed to separate two food colorants (E122 and E133). ABS are promising extractive platforms, particularly for biomolecules, due to their aqueous and mild nature (pH and temperature), reduced environmental impact and processing costs. Another major aspect considered, particularly useful in downstream processing, is the tuning ability for the extraction and purification of these systems by a proper choice of the ABS components. In this work, our intention is to show the concept of ABS as an alternative and volatile organic solvent-free tool to separate two different biomolecules in a simple way, so simple that teachers can effectively adopt it in their classes to explain the concept of bioseparation processes. Informative documents and general information about the preparation of binodal curves and their use in the partition of biomolecules is available in this work to be used by teachers in their classes. In this sense, the students use different carbohydrates to build ABS, then study the partition of two food color dyes (synthetic origin), thus evaluating their ability on the separation of both food colorants. Through these experiments, the students get acquainted with ABS, learn how to determine solubility curves and perform extraction procedures using colorant food additives, that can also be applied in the extraction of various (bio)molecules. (c) 2018 by The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, 46:390-397, 2018.




Biochemistry & Molecular Biology; Education & Educational Research


Santos, JHPM; Capela, EV; Boal-Palheiros, I; Coutinho, JAP; Freire, MG; Ventura, SPM

nossos autores


Grant sponsor: Fundo Europeu de Desenvolvimento Regional; Grant number: POCI-01-0145-FEDER-007679.; Grant sponsor: Fundacao para a Ciencia e a Tecnologia; Grant numbers: IF/00402/2015, SFRH/BD/102915/2014, SFRH/BD/126202/2016, UID/CTM/50011/2013.; Grant sponsor: H2020 European Research Council; Grant number: ERC-2013-StG-337753.

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