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The development of phytosterol-lecithin mixed micelles and organogels

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Original languageEnglish
JournalFood & Function
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2017


We demonstrate that by mixing the phytosterol-ester oryzanol with lecithin in an organic solvent, both components may be dispersed at much higher concentrations than they may be individually. Dynamic light scattering and molecular dynamics simulations show that the mechanism for this is the formation of r ∼ 4 nm mixed micelles. Infrared spectroscopy and simulations suggest that these micelles are formed due in part to hydrogen bonding of the phosphate of the lecithin head-group, and the phenol group of the oryzanol. Rheology shows that by mixing these materials at an equimolar ratio, highly viscous suspensions are created. Furthermore, by adding water to these samples, a solid-like gel may be formed which offers mechanical properties close to those desired for a margarine type spread, whilst still solubilizing the oryzanol.

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