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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: REDUCING THE ALLERGENIC PROPERTIES OF PEANUTS Title: Effect of ribose on mature/immature raw peanut proteins and their allergenic properties

Author
item Chung, Si-Yin

Submitted to: Food and Nutrition Sciences
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: April 19, 2011
Publication Date: July 1, 2011
Citation: Chung, S. 2011. Effect of ribose on mature/immature raw peanut proteins and their allergenic properties. Food and Nutrition Sciences. 2(4):294-300.

Interpretive Summary: Mature and immature raw peanuts are different, the latter tends to develop fruity fermented off-flavors during roasting; therefore, peanuts are always subjected to screening for maturity before they are roasted and marketed. The current method is by size-screening; that is, the larger the peanut, the more mature it is. But this is not always the case. In this study, a chemical assay rather than visualizing the peanut size is described, and considered more accurate in predicting peanut maturity, because it dealt with the chemistry rather than the physical appearance of peanuts. Before the assay, a reaction between a sugar and peanut protein was carried out. The reaction produced by-products that, when mixed with a chemical called nitroblue tetrazolium (NBT), turned colored products. The color was recorded and correlated with the maturity of peanuts (that is, the darker the color, the more mature the peanut is). Of the sugars tested, ribose (a functional sugar) produced the greatest difference in color. Also, the allergenic capacity of mature and immature peanuts could be distinguished, based on the ribose-peanut protein reaction. In conclusion, the NBT assay using ribose could potentially be a tool for distinguishing mature from immature raw peanuts and their allergenic capacity.

Technical Abstract: Mature and immature raw peanuts are different, the latter tends to develop fruity fermented off-flavors during roasting; therefore, peanuts are always subjected to screening for maturity before they are roasted and marketed. The current method is by size-screening; that is, the larger the peanut, the more mature it is. But this is not always the case. In this study, a chemical assay rather than visualizing the peanut size is described, and considered more accurate in predicting peanut maturity, because it dealt with the chemistry rather than the physical appearance of peanuts. Before the assay, a reaction between a sugar and peanut protein was carried out. The reaction produced by-products that, when mixed with a chemical called nitroblue tetrazolium (NBT), turned colored products. The color was recorded and correlated with the maturity of peanuts (that is, the darker the color, the more mature the peanut is). Of the sugars tested, ribose (a functional sugar) produced the greatest difference in color. Also, the allergenic capacity of mature and immature peanuts could be distinguished, based on the ribose-peanut protein reaction. In conclusion, the NBT assay using ribose could potentially be a tool for distinguishing mature from immature raw peanuts and their allergenic capacity.

Last Modified: 11/25/2014
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