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Modification of Granular Corn Starch with 4-α-Glucanotransferase from Thermotoga maritima: Effects on Structural and Physical Properties

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Corn starch was converted using α-1,4-glucanotransferase from Thermotoga maritima (TmαGT), a hyperthermophilic bacterium, without inducing gelatinization, and the structural changes and physical properties of the modified starches were investigated. Enzyme modification was induced at 65 °C for 8, 16, or 24 h, and the morphology of the modified starches was observed with light and scanning electron microscopy. Granule integrity was mostly maintained after enzyme treatment, although some granules were partially fragmented as evidenced by enlarged surface pores and some cracks. The modified starches had lower apparent amylose levels than raw starch. The molecular weights of amylose and amylopectin molecules in the treated starches were lower than those of raw starch, and the amount of branched molecules, which had much lower molecular weights, also increased in the treated starches. The chain-length distribution of amylopectin showed an increased number of shorter branched chains. The modified starches showed a wider melting temperature range and a lower melting enthalpy than that of raw starch. The X-ray diffraction pattern of the modified starches showed typical A-type starch peaks, but the relative crystallinities were lower than that of raw starch. The solubility and paste clarity of the modified starches were much higher than those of raw starch. The modified starch gels maintained their rigidity over the whole frequency range tested and showed thermoreversibility between 4 and 75 °C. These results suggest that TmαGT can be used to produce granular corn starch, which contains amylose and amylopectin having lower molecular weights and a thermoreversible gelation property.
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Keywords: Thermotoga maritima; granular starch; rheological property; structural property; α-glucanotransferase

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: April 1, 2008

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